Deaf Way II Conference Report

By Tiffany Williams

9 July thru 11 July

For the first time, CISS had its own information booth at the Exhibition hall during the Deaf Way II conference. Our booth was located next to WebbyNation, which was a good idea since WNI is well known for attracting lots of customers to their booth! The Exhibition hall was open to public from 9 am to 5:30 pm from 9 July to 11 July. CISS Treasurer Ole Artmann and Barbara Mokotoff, a volunteer, also helped me in manning the booth as well. CISS Secretary General Donalda Ammons also came by a couple of times to speak with certain individuals who requested appointments with her.

Our display included:

  • The new CISS flag
  • A large world map to show which countries affiliated with CISS
  • Large pictures from Deaflympics 2001 in Rome
  • Video shown on laptop about 2003 Winter Deaflympics in Sundsvall
  • CISS brochures (giveaway)
  • CISS pens (giveaways)
  • CISS postcards (giveaways)
  • CISS posters (giveaways)
  • CISS pins (to sell)
  • CISS flying discs (to sell)
  • CISS bandanas (to sell)
  • CISS in Review books (to sell)
  • Deaflympics magazines (to sell)
  • Sign up sheets for free subscription to CISS E-News

We met with so many people who stopped by our booth. There were so many questions and we were glad we could share information with them. We had 4 pages worth of signed up names for free subscription to CISS E-News. Many representatives from countries visited our booth, as follows:

  • USA
  • Canada
  • Philippines
  • Poland
  • Croatia
  • Australia
  • American Samoa
  • Finland
  • France
  • Belarus
  • Burundi
  • Russia
  • Burma
  • Spain
  • Korea
  • Holland
  • Venezuela
  • Peru
  • Belgium
  • Israel
  • Portugal
  • Mali
  • Kuwait
  • Ukraine

We felt that having a booth at the Exhibition was beneficial to us. We have received so many questions, as follows; (in partial)

  • What is CISS?
  • Where will the next Winter/Summer Deaflympics be held? Dates?
  • Why did CISS change the name from WGD to Deaflympics?
  • Can I join CISS as an individual member?
  • How much is membership per year?
  • Who are the countries that are affiliated to CISS?
  • What is the difference between CISS and Deaflympics?
  • Why doesn’t CISS have enough money?
  • Why aren’t we as rich as Paralympics?
  • Why aren't our Games held the same year as Olympics?
  • Who is the president of CISS?
  • Where is the CISS home office?
  • How can my country join?
  • How can I join as an athlete?
  • How can I promote Orienteering in America?
  • Why isn’t lacrosse/triathlon a part of Deaflympics sport?
  • How do I bid for hosting Deaflympics in my country?
  • How can I get a job with CISS?
  • How can I volunteer?
  • How can my performance company perform at the Deaflympics?
  • How can I become one of Sign Language interpreters?
  • What is CISS’s long term plans?
  • How can CISS get recognition from hearing communities?
  • How can I volunteer to help CISS obtain more sponsors?

Most of the people that approached us were not aware of either the CISS website or the Deaflympics website. We handed out brochures that had both websites listed and encouraged them to view it.

this experience, there is clear evidence that CISS needs to go out and promote more. It can be done through setting up a booth or attending conferences. We probably want to think about two different audiences. The first audience would be those who need to learn about CISS and Deaflympics for better promotion in their countries. The second audience would be companies that may be our potential donors. There are expos out there where we can try to draw interest for potential sponsorships.

In conclusion, we felt that our goals and purposes of having a booth at Deaf Way II were successfully met.