Manitoba School for the Deaf (MSD)

What is Deaf Community?

When interacting in the Deaf community where Deaf culture is the norm, Deaf people are truly in an inclusive environment. The Deaf community is a group of Deaf people who share common ideas, beliefs and customs. This group shares a sense of belonging. Individuals within the community feel an obligation to care for other members of the group to protect their rights so that they can enjoy the privileges and opportunities of society. People in the Deaf community share common values, interests, attitudes, and goals. Deaf culture is the heart of the Deaf community. Many people in the Deaf community have pride in their identity as a Deaf individual, and interaction in the Deaf community helps to ensure a positive identity. It is important for members of the Deaf community to meet and participate in community events. Most Deaf individuals that grew up in the Deaf community become leaders of various organizations within the community such as Deaf sports, community events, etc. Active involvement in the Deaf community makes life full and meaningful. The Deaf community also form links with parents and siblings of Deaf children to strengthen and enlarge the community circle for Deaf children. Communication is not a barrier for Deaf people when interacting in the Deaf community. Community involvement provides great opportunities for social skill development, leadership opportunities, and allows self-worth to flourish. It is all about Deaf children mingling together, playing sports as well as studying and learning together.

Deaf community members include: Deaf and Hard of Hearing children, youth, adults and seniors (e.g., schools for the Deaf, Deaf clubs and organizations, agencies serving Deaf people). In Manitoba, the Deaf Resources Centre (DRC), posts Deaf community events.

In Manitoba, Deaf community organizations include:
Manitoba Deaf Association (MDA)
Manitoba Cultural Society of the Deaf (MCSD)
Manitoba Deaf Sports Association (MDSA)

Reference

Padden, C. (1980). The deaf community and the culture of deaf people. In C. Baker, & R. Pattison (Eds.) Sign language and the deaf community. Silver Spring: National Association of the Deaf.