The history of interstate deaf sport in Australia dates back to 1895 when the Victorian deaf cricket team travelled to South Australia for a game. Deaf Sport Carnivals have been held from 1914.
“Whilst sport is clearly core, the Australian Deaf Games also constitutes a major social and cultural festival for the whole Deaf community.” —Australiandeafgames.com
We arrived to a sea of hands on 9 January for the opening ceremonies in Adelaide. Teams from every state and territory, Fiji and Vanuatu were involved and hundreds of spectators from around Australia welcomed them.
Highlights of the week included:
–Watching the Fijian team enter the stage of the opening ceremonies with smiles and traditional dress. Fiji has a very strong deaf community.
–Watching K catch up with her oldest deaf friend, Tobian–they’re now eight, but still holding hands.
–Meeting people from all over Australia–such a friendly atmosphere. I’ve always found the Deaf community warm and welcoming, even when I only knew about three words of Auslan.
–Watching Helen coordinate 50+ kids learn the routine for the closing ceremony, “like herding cats, but more fun!