Deaflympic Games have their own peculiarities and it takes some time to realize them and to understand how many people are involved in organizing and conducting the competitions.
«There are no irreplaceable people» – that is not about them. Sign language interpreters are the second most important people of the Games after athletes. We have asked them if there are some difficulties in communicating with the deaf and why they have chosen this profession.
«Sign languages differ from each other – Russian sign language is not like American sign language, English differs from American», – says a sign language interpreter Darya Vinokurova from Moscow. «There is an international sign language but not many people speak it. We are here to translate from Russian sign language and English verbal language. I’ve started learning Russian sign language 1.5 years ago in the Moscow State Linguistic University with deaf teachers. I didn’t have enough practice, this is the first time I am working on sport competitions as a sign language interpreters. I am here as a volunteer representing my University».
«Sometimes athletes are getting nervous and it is difficult to calm them down and to make them talk more slowly. But still it is not a problem to find common ground with them. As I know only Russian sign language sometimes it’s difficult for me to communicate with foreigners. But they are always ready to find a common language and to understand what you are talking to them. I will continue to learn Russian sign language in the future. It is a full-featured language just like Russian or Chinese verbal languages», – says Antonina Stalirova from Moscow.
«I am an interpreter of Russian sign language. Sometimes it is difficult for me to interpret some sports terms and phrases, to do this correctly you need to know the specifics of sport disciplines then everything goes better, – says Valentina Gavrilova from Izhevsk. – I am from a deaf family so first I learnt sign language and only later started speaking in Russian. My parents do not talk so, obviously, I am communicating with them using sign language. I started speaking very late because it was more convenient for me to communicate using Russian sign language».