The Duchess and her Duke have just gotten home from the Monday evening Dreambuilders Club meeting, which ran especially late tonight. At the meeting tonight was a young man – Joel by name – who is home from Africa, where he’s been for 11 years. Raised here in Minneapolis and Bloomington, he now teaches there, including teaching the deaf. He has come back to the States for several months with the purpose of raising funds for his organization, Global Deaf Connection .
Global Deaf Connection has been given office space in a South Minneapolis church which provides Lutheran services for the deaf. Merryn Flavell and the Duchess have met with prospective deaf students at the church, in hopes of offering them the opportunity to study for a liberal arts bachelor’s degree through Flavell International University. The fact that this is an online university (based on the Great Books) tends to level the playing field for the deaf students. Because the deaf in most of the world are not allowed any occupation but begging, his organization has the goal of teaching the deaf so that they can teach the next generation of the deaf – all with the aim of raising their standard of living and more fully utilzing the vast human potential for good that these intelligent people represent.
Here follows a statement from the website:
THE VISION of GDC is to see Deaf people around the world actively using their native sign language to support Deaf children to excel academically, gain meaningful employment, continually further human rights, and make major contributions that sustain their Deaf communities.
OUR MISSION is to develop self-sustaining cycles of Deaf education and leadership skills through advocacy, multi-cultural exchange, college scholarships, and mentor support. These cycles will empower Deaf people in developing countries to achieve greater access to universal human rights which will increase their social and economic self sufficiency.
So Merryn and the Duchess are introducing him to people, looking to find beneficial connections in that field. After the meeting and the networking were over, this Duchess played chauffer at the end of the evening and gave him a ride home. It was gratifying to hear him say that he really enjoyed meeting the people and that he felt he had made two really good contacts this evening.
So, it was an evening well spent! And the Duchess was truly grateful to hear it!