BACKGROUND: THE SILENT HORN FOUNDATION
The Silent Horn Foundation’s main ideology is to support the work of Samira Duale in the spirit to her working style providing back-office structure, strategy, demanding research, program development, design and implementation.
Commitment, Humanity, Integrity, Sincerity, Teamwork and Transparency.
Samira Duale is a British citizen born in Somalia. As a survivor of bullying, she has spent the last six years of her life campaigning locally and internationally, for awareness of the psychological, medical and social implications of Deaf education, often using her personal testimony to draw attention to the ideologies. She has worked tirelessly within England, and more recently specifically in Somalia to bring about legal status for Somali Sign Language, cultural, political, social awareness and social acceptance of attitudes towards Deaf Somali community.
Instinctively understanding the deep-rooted cultural resistance to change in Deaf education in Somalia, Samira recognised that the first step to change is acknowledgement and dialogue about the barriers within Deaf education. Her courageous and honest testimony bears witness to the physical reality of the experience of bullying has earned her the trust of a wide range of stakeholders for change from national government members to regional education bodies, international NGOs and local charities as well as the media.
Appreciating the power of partnership, Samira has developed a unique network of formal and informal associates who are committed to working with the Silent Horn Foundation across all strands of its proposed program for the introduction of Deaf education originally in Somalia. And by connecting the resources of these stakeholders into a combination of national, regional and global partners, Samira and the Silent Horn Foundation are hopeful that this sector of commitments, expertise and resources will trigger a rewarding point of systemic cultural and social change in attitudes to Deaf people and bring about widespread awareness of the barriers affected in the education.
Samira Duale grew up in Somalia and was educated in London.
This dual-nationality experience informs a unique perspective as to how to address the abandonment of Deaf education that is informed yet respectful of Somali culture and norms. Her willingness to speak openly about her own experience of bullying that gives voice to survivors and hopes to those who seek protection.
She has a deep understanding of the rooted cultural, social and religious challenge to change the people’s attitudes toward Deaf people in Somalia, an automatic understanding of the need for exchange of ideas and crucial campaigning proposals for positive methodologies which recognised that change can only be achieved through short, mid and long-term advocacy, Deaf awareness, community empowerment and school education programmes.
With these insights implemented, The Silent Horn foundation has established a network of teachers, parents of Deaf children, health and educational professionals that are capable to evolving the Deaf education, implementing and sustaining a long-term commitment to a Deaf community with specific disability measures.
Samira Duale herself has worked at all levels of civil society activity and earned the respect of a wide range of advocates and activists from government ministers to grassroots CSOs.
Sahra Farah and Luul Osman Del, my colleagues recently appointed to the position as a Sign language specialist and Communication manager to the First Lady of Somalia Saynab Moallim on Deaf education issues, she is in a unique position to act as the supporter for the proposed The Silent Horn Foundation coalition for change. Together with formal and informal partners. The Silent Horn Foundation is preparing a three-pillar strategy to end the exclusion of Deaf education in Somalia, the social and medical model of disability in Africa and beyond, starting with a pilot program in Mogadishu.
Samira Duale’s vision is to realise the absolute importance of Deaf school education in Somalia, throughout East Africa and internationally within a generation. With a commitment to community empowerment, education programmes and enriched awareness campaigning linked to the three-pillars of advocacy, awareness and CEP, the Silent Horn Foundation envisages a future free of Deaf school access.
Somalia is one of the world most challenging countries to exclude Deaf people from education, public and health services. The flip side of achieving Deaf school access in an era where a generation of people in Somalia might become educated of Deaf culture, Deaf history and human rights especially for the women. Deaf school access will be the awakening of one of the world’s most vulnerable human resources. We are positive for all the social, political, economic and cultural benefits that would be credited with.
Samira Duale with the help from Sahra Farah, the mission is to create a path for the equal access of Deaf education through the use of sign language, coordinated programme of community empowerment, trying to stop the attitudes and developing the acceptance of change within the Deaf community to their hearing peers and families. Also, the mission is encouraging the public to respect a Deaf person, treating them fairly like an equal citizen of Somalia and share the knowledge/information to be delivered and impacted by a coalition of supporters. For example in this case, when hearing parents bore their Deaf child, they was being embarrassed and hide away their Deaf child against the law of human rights where they should be in the opposite, should be proud to show their Deaf child and encouraging their daughter or son to attend school and universities to contribute something within the society.
Commencing in Somalia and then into East Africa with a view to expanding its methods into a global campaign for change. The Silent Horn Foundation is further committed to providing support to survivors of Deaf bullying, aiming to lighten the emotional and psychological effects suffered by survivors with medical therapies and social assistance as required. Basically, the Silent Horn Foundation is dedicated to the global inclusion of Deaf and Hard of hearing.
An applicable theory of systemic belief change unique to Somalia’s cultural, and social systems is the current focus of Silent Horn Foundation’s CEP approach to addressing the deeply deep-rooted social and cultural-based belief system in Somalia supporting the exclusion of Deaf school education. Armed with interactive field research the Silent Horn Foundation will adapt and apply the lesson learned to its grass-roots community empowerment and education programmes allied to an interactive on-the-ground awareness campaign while working on leadership to legislate for the equal access to Deaf education and have Somali Sign Language (SOSL) recognition.
Structurally, the organisation focuses on linking effective ‘win-win’ associations and partnerships at political, cultural and social, NGO and CSO community level with the common goal of prioritizing the implementation of programs to promote the inclusion of Deaf access in countries of high frequency on a permanent basis.