Deaf Action Committee For SignWriting

1996 was a very eventful year for the DAC. Darline Clark, a graduate of Gallaudet University, with a major in Child Development, became DAC Director in February. In June, Darline traveled to Nicaragua to teach SignWriting to Nicaraguan Deaf children at a school for the Deaf in Bluefields, in collaboration with the Nicaraguan Sign Language Project, directed by Dr. Judy and James Shepard-Kegl. Attached is a report written by Darline about her experiences.

1996 also brought SignWriting to the World-Wide-Web with a "very-official" SignWriting Web Site, complete with Lessons Online, Newsletters, History, and a Catalog. I learned how to design web sites, with the help of Richard Gleaves, our software designer. SignWriting was debated on the Internet on America Online and on the Sign Language Linguist's List, SLLING-L. This brought an increase in email requests for information. In September, we started to accept Visa and Mastercard payments, which facilitates foreign sales, since currency exchange is easier with credit cards.

Brazil became the 14th country to use SignWriting, thanks to a dedicated professor, Antonio Carlos Rocha da Costa, from Porto Alegre, Brazil. Other countries, such as Japan and England did several TV programs highlighting SignWriting, and in the USA, our "Lessons In SignWriting" Video Series was presented as two TV programs, shown on national cable throughout May and June, on KTV, Kaleidoscope Cable TV.

Kevin Clark traveled to Montreal, presenting a SignWriting Workshop at the International Research conference there. At the end of this report, is a listing of important events in 1996.

All good wishes for a great 1997! Valerie Sutton


Note: This Year-End Report does not mention all of the wonderful workshops and projects using SignWriting around the world. It is only a summary of the accomplishments of DAC and CSMW staff members in 1996....a real short report!