Resource of
Open Minds

ZIMBABWE DEAF MEDIA TRUST

Themes: Art Practice, Community, Freedom of Expression,
Region: Southern Africa
Country: Zimbabwe

Deaf performing arts

ZDMT plans to work on documenting Deaf oral literature in Zimbabwe through the use of new media. The group will develop a Deaf entertainment site to promote Deaf artistic work and challenge the stereotype that music/dance is chiefly linked to sound. Content will be repurposed into various formats, such as images, infographics, video clips, etc. The project uses art to counter and change the perception of Deaf people in society, to develop and nurture Deaf talent, and at the same time give Deaf people the freedom to express themselves in Sign Language. The focus will be on the areas of poetry, mime, dance and different genres in Deaf oral literature, in order to cultivate a Deaf performing arts culture amongst Deaf learners. ZDMT will organise poetry slams, create a compilation of digital stories that will be distributed on DVD and social media, and create a documentary film and a Deaf media channel to reach a wide range of audiences.

The Zimbabwe Deaf Media Trust (ZDMT) is a Deaf-led organisation officially established in 2010. The Trust advocates for the inclusion of Deaf people at all levels in the economic and social spheres of society. Promoting the use of Sign Language and ensuring that Deaf people participate fully in their communities is at the centre of the organisation’s work, by bridging information gaps and language barriers. The Trust’s mission is to transform and empower Deaf and hard of hearing people for independent living through the provision of education and by changing societal attitudes. Raising awareness, advocacy projects, service provision and sustainable initiatives form part of the Trust’s approach to achieving its goals.