When Sign Language Speaks Out Loud

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Written by Annalie F. Minon, Volunteer Writer and Photographer, Operation Blessing Philippines

John Kyle, 13, Erline, 12, and Nicollette, 11, are all good friends since childhood. Their friendship has created a free world for them to interact, express their thoughts, and emotions through sign language.

These three lovely teenagers were recipients of the Operation Blessing (OB) Philippines in partnership with the Phil-Asia Association Foundation Inc.’s (PAAFI) medical and dental mission. With the help of their mothers who did the interpretation, OB got to know their stories.

First, meet the bubbly and friendly John Kyle; you may not hear any word from him, but in every stroke of his hands, conveys his true heart. His condition was first diagnosed when he was two years old and learned sign language at the age of four.

Next is the confident Erline, who hopes to become a fashion model. She would not be able to express herself audibly, but through walking her way to the ramp, will surely let herself come out from her silent shell. As early as one-year-old she learned the “traditional” sign language which enables her to communicate with others.

And last but not the least is Nicollete. Unlike John and Erline, she can hear a little, and speak very few unclear words. This little lady aspires to be a culinary chef someday. With this dream in her heart, she said that she will study well no matter how challenging it would be in her case.

They may have different aspirations in life but share the same problem—bullying. Instead of taking it negatively, it became the reason why their friendship got stronger.

The mission does not only put on a smile and excitement on their faces, as they received free dental treatment, medical check up, and medicines. But also, touch their hearts through the counselling and prayers the mission has offered them.

OB is grateful to meet and serve wonderful people like John, Erline and Nicollete. And is very much thrilled to meet more like them! Will you help us? Visit us at www.obphil.com or www.facebook.com/obphil

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