Bayanihan festival for the deaf
In commemoration of its 25th anniversary, the School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies (SDEAS) of De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB) recently held the 23rd Bayanihan: Reminiscing Filipino Traditions in the Deaf Community, a weeklong festival that showcased the talents and abilities of the hearing impaired.
Among activities held included a Deaf Visual Images Art (De’VIA) workshop, a sign language poetry competition, and a sportsfest.
Festival Chairperson Veronica del Rosario said Filipino sign language breaks down barriers that prevented the deaf from expressing their feelings.
“We are advocating their identity, that they need to express what they feel, not just using words or in oral form,” Del Rosario continued.
Facilitated by Festival Vice Chairperson Erika Aguillon and Rosanna Mariano, the art workshop participants were tasked to illustrate their sentiments and hidden desires.
“De’VIA will help the deaf express through art and be able to identify all the struggles they have experienced in their lives,” Mariano states.
SDEAS students used sign language to create visually stimulating poems that expressed their emotions. Named champion was Dominador Aniban, followed by Joseph Balongag and Joshua Camposano, first and second runners-up, respectively.
Most of the pieces conveyed the discrimination and frustration they regularly encounter. Aguillon shared most have problems with their family and at school, issues that they expressed in their works.
Meanwhile, the DLS-CSB Taft Campus Gymnasium was the venue for a number of games, including traditional Filipino ones, such as patintero and bunot (coconut husk) relay.
Festival Finance Head Dexter Belandres shared the sessions were not intended to be competitions against teams, but gave the players an opportunity to interact and enjoy themselves, as embraced by the bayanihan spirit.