What an amazing time we all had at the Amnesty International Human Rights conference in Brooklyn during the spring break! It was a weekend full of surprises. I was not expecting what unfolded. I was asked to take the stage and show the ASL signs for a chant used in the protest to the crowd by an Amnesty staff before the march across the Brooklyn bridge. I really loved how they incorporated ASL into their chant “Justice Now!” and how Deaf awareness was raised. They were totally for inclusion of everyone.
My sincere appreciation and thanks goes to Michaela Hanley for being quick to respond in a time of need and being my voice interpreter when the actual interpreters were not present during the rally due to miscommunication. I learnt so much at the conference. One workshop that I gleaned much from was titled Constructing Our Own Public Narrative: A Storytelling Strategy. The session focused on the art of storytelling, adopting a social justice and human rights framework.
To quote one of the panelists at the conference: “I am not doing anything special. I do the work that I do because it is what I should be doing.” I know and I agree. 🙂 Being an active participant in the conference, convinced me that international development is the right field for me to be in although the nature of the job is very challenging.
I headed back to DC on the bus with my classmates feeling touched, inspired and charged up. It certainly was an eventful weekend and an experience I will not forget for many years to come! 🙂