Report from Deafblind International European Conference 2017

Deirdre Leech (Deafblind Outreach Consultant) and Heather Colson-Osborne (Team Leader at Anne Sullivan Centre) were given the opportunity  to represent Ireland at the 9th Deafblind International European Conference in Aalborg, Denmark in September 2018.  The theme of the conference was “Touch of Closeness: Maintaining Social Connectedness” so all of the presentations revolved around topics relating to individuals with deafblindness and their connection with their family, carers, the community, and each other.  As communication modes are very important and unique for people with both congenital and acquired deafblindness, there were a lot of sessions that focussed on this which were very interesting and informative. There was also some great information on supporting people with Usher syndrome, physical activities and  human rights for people who are deafblind as well as the latest up to date research. Deirdre and Heather also met a number of people from other countries who were supportive of the Anne Sullivan Centre’s campaign for recognition of deafblindness in Ireland.  The next DBI conference will be held in Australia in 2019.