Abstract

American organizations bringing assistance to deaf people in developing countries unintentionally create relationships of dependency or oppression rather than relationships of support. Using qualitative methods, the author examined the effectiveness of development assistance provided to the Jamaican Deaf community by two American churches, one American nongovernmental organization, and one U.S. federal agency. Documents were reviewed and observations were made. Interviews were conducted with more than 60 deaf and hearing people involved with the American organizations, the Jamaican organizations, and deaf Jamaican beneficiaries. The author concludes that the Jamaican Deaf community was often excluded in planning, designing, or evaluating programs, and was unsatisfied with the American assistance it received. Results also indicate that the American organizations were poorly prepared to work with the Deaf community. Suggestions for American organizations wishing to strengthen and empower deaf people through development assistance in developing countries are proposed.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1543-0375
Print ISSN
0002-726X
Pages
pp. 292-304
Launched on MUSE
2005-09-01
Open Access
No
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