Sunday, March 5, 2017

Griseline Dionisio Jusino also known as Mrs. Grissy is an inspiring, heart-full individual who has dedicated her life to learning about the Deaf community.  Her inspiration came about when her first born daughter was diagnosed with hearing loss at the age of two, 30 years ago.  Ever since then she dedicated herself to learn all she could about the Deaf community just so that she can learn about the world that her daughter would once become a part of.  Her eagerness to ensure that the communication between her daughter and her grew and this served as a motivation for her to become an interpreter and a teacher.   In turn, she obtained a Deaf Studies degree and a Masters in Education as well as becoming a Certified ASL/Spanish Interpreter.  She has over 17 years experience and has provided services within various fields (educational:  New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE), VESID-ACCES-VR, medical and mental health).

“ My goal was not to become an interpreter or a teacher, my goal was to be able to communicate with my daughter.  I now feel the urge to give back to the community, I want to contribute by helping parents with deaf children to understand the importance of learning Sign Language.  I want to share my story.  I want for people to know how Deaf culture has opened up a whole new world for me and my family.  I want Deaf people to be empowered and for hearing parents to know that they can make a difference in raising deaf children.  Parents can help their children become as happy and productive as they can be.  Hearing parents need to learn Sign Language and about Deaf culture, they need to accept their lovely children for whom they are, they need to support them the best way possible.”

“I have three lovely grandchildren, whom are CODA's (Children of Deaf Adults), I am elated that my daughter (Melissa) has grown to be a beautiful and productive individual, a wonderful mom, and the best person she can be.  I am so proud of her and of my grand-kids. I love her husband and his family. I love that my other children also support Deaf culture. We all sign at home.  It was not difficult for my sons to learn sign language because my daughter is the first born child.  We used sign language wherever we went. Of course, people stared and wondered what we where doing, but I didn't care.   I was happy that we could all communicate, and that my daughter was not left out.”

“I remember my mother telling me not to do those gestures because Melissa would never learn to speak that way.  I tried to explain to her that I needed to learn sign language, I needed to teach it to Melissa because I knew, I felt it in my heart, that signing was going to be part of her world, AND I wanted to be part of her world too.  It took many years for my mother to understand, but what's important is that she eventually understood.

“I am grateful for all of my experiences, for my children and grand children because that is why I am who I am today.”

“My ultimate goal is to provide the community with access to learning American Sign Language and about Deaf culture and to eventually offer workshops to Deaf/ HH and the hearing community.”

“I am grateful, for my life experiences, my children and grandchildren, my husband, and my colleagues for making this happen.  Thank you all whom have supported me.”

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