Deaf Education Trip to Panama – May 2023

Following our March 2023 trip to Guatemala, we received a request to go to Panama to determine if
there might be a possibility of bringing the Deaf Education Team there. As the Team Leader, I spent 3
weeks in Panama visiting 3 different schools in the Los Lajos area and made presentations to teachers
about Deaf education. The three schools each had 1 to 3 Deaf students and the teachers were keen to
receive information on how to create the best learning environment for them.
During the 3 weeks, I also assisted Heather and Danny Nelson with their after-school program in Oma
located in Ngäbe-Buglé Comarca region. Heather and Danny run a program for children from 3 to 18
years of age. They provide the children with opportunities to do activities with books, English, Spanish
and crafts.
I travelled to Panama City to visit Escuela Nacional de Sordos which is the national centre for
rehabilitation. They have 4 classes of Deaf students and are a resource for all of the schools in Panama.
They produce teaching materials in Panamanian Sign Language and have a teaching model they share
with other teachers.
Since my return, I have been in contact with some of the teachers and worked to assist them from
Canada. A decision to return to Panama will be made at a later date.