Христина Чопарова

Христина Чопарова

Christina Tchoparova
Sunday, 04 November 2018 12:42

The Sign Language’s Ambassadors

Dear Readers, this year’s World Beauty Contest Miss & Mister Deaf Stars (MMDS) took place in Caserta, Italy, from 19th to 29th of October 2018. Foundation “Deaf Unlimited Bulgaria” was among the organizations hosting the prestigious event. Part of its activities involves preparing deaf Bulgarian models for International Beauty Contests and aiding them in their participation. The MMDS event got Bulgarian candidates Yummyugul Sally (Miss Deaf Bulgaria 2018) and Nikolay Korchev (Mister Deaf Bulgaria 2018) measure up their beauty and skills against fellow models from around the world. Both of them were raised in the families of hearing people. They also strongly advocate for the legal recognition of Bulgarian Sign Language. They are Ambassadors of the Sign Language in Caserta, Italy. They are convinced that participating in fashion shows is a wonderful way of introducing the unconventional beauty of the gesturing hands to the world.

Saturday, 01 September 2018 13:00

Living in the show

You can’t help but notice the big smile she’s giving you even if it’s the first time you both have met. You can sense her positive outlook and extreme vitality which create a friendly atmosphere around. We’d like to ask her about the popular and tremendously successful show she’s been hosting in the social media for five years now (Boryana  Topchieva Show). She’s occupied with plenty of activities being a vlogger, a translater, an athlete, a show-woman, a traveler, a parent and … the author of an upcoming book! But I’m not telling you anything more about her. You’ll see for yourself now that we’re letting Boryana Topchieva speak about it all.

Monday, 28 May 2018 15:00

Sensitivity is speaking out

The moment you touch something … it starts speaking to you in shapes, textures, temperature. It’s telling you about a world well beyond the one words can describe. Your fingers can respond to the touch with gentle movements, caressing or powerful pressure. They can draw things while making explanations. They could be the pencil writing stories as well as the rubber erasing them to tell more tales. The stories you write touching human skin are indeed the Story of Life of deafblind people. Their sensitivity is the page you’ve been writing your stories on which can handle any story told. It could well be the pencil writing out the description of the World beyond the line of Vision. Sensitivity is speaking out at the workshop on the Alternative Ways of Communication with Deafblind People held by the NADbBg from 12th May to 13th May 2018.

Thursday, 10 May 2018 13:00

On Communication with Love

Dear Readers of We Hear You, you might remember last year’s event in Plovdiv devoted to the demonstration of ways of communication with deafblind people. The Norwegian methods sparked the interest of a great deal of people, so they asked to be taught how to use them in practical situations. The National Association of the Deafblind in Bulgaria (NADbBg) won a grant in 2012, which allowed it to host an education event for interpreters of deafblind people. Unfortunately, just five professionals were given the opportunity to learn the alternative ways of communication mentioned above. The number of knowledgeable professionals prepared to work with deafblind people is far from being enough to meet the needs of the deafblind people in Bulgaria. What’s more, they’ve never worked with children before. But this is what’s going to happen now.

Dear Readers, we’ll introduce you to a very, very brave boy named Georgi Skordev. He lives in a world we know little to practically nothing about. Georgi was so eager to come into our world that he was born prematurely to his loving parents who had been excitedly expecting him. This caused him to lose his sight and hearing. He is both deaf and blind, but a very sensitive child. He’s a 10-year-old guy from a seaside city who has a lot to tell us. However, his stories have so far remained untold because his means of communication are still unknown to us and we can barely come to a reaching point. That’s why, his mother is speaking out for him.

I’ve known Maria Popova (or Maya, as the people close to her know her) for ages. But we’ve only managed to meet up in person along with Goshko at the International Conference ‘See the Silence, Hear the darkness’ held in Plovdiv last year. She was there to share her experience as a parent of a deafblind child. Unfortunately, we barely had the time to speak about all the matters that concern us. This is why I’m expressing my sincere gratitude on her willingness to speak out through We Hear You.

Last year, Mitko graduated from New Bulgarian University, getting bachelor’s degrees in Acting in Film & Television. With his active imagination, he would write scripts in hope that some day, he’ll see them playing on the screen. Mitko Yakimov is the founder of Foundation Deaf Unlimited Bulgaria, the organization doing the National research on Bulgarian Sign Language. He was also a part of the international judging committee of the Miss and Mister Deaf Stars 2017 beauty contest, which recently took place in Paris. Ladies and gentleman, allow me to present Mitko Yakimov!


Wednesday, 04 January 2017 02:00

Technologies that change the World

Dear readers, we welcome you into 2017! The year has started with many new things, but now I want to share with you one special news. The young creators of the AVA application, who I already informed you about, are included in the list of prestigious Forbes magazine for young entrepreneurs. They are included in the Forbes’ selection “30 under 30” for 2017 as a proactive young team, because their application AVA will change the history of the deaf and hard-of-hearing people. This mobile application offers easy communication in real time with conversion of speech into text in dynamic circumstances featuring more than two speakers. AVA already has fans throughout half of the world!

Dear friends and Readers of We Hear You, there are meetings and events that leave you with a feeling of fascination long after they’re over. I had the splendid chance to participate in a meeting with Amber Smock, director of the Access Living Disability Advocacy Institute in Chicago, Illinois. The event took place on 17th of February 2016 at the Faculty of Educational Studies of Sofia University ’St.Kliment Ohridski’. I was invited to attend the meeting as a media expert of the Union of the Deaf in Bulgaria. Mrs. Smock has a hearing loss herself and hosts educational events for special education teachers. She was invited to visit Bulgaria by members of the National Association of Special Education Teachers in Bulgaria (NASEDBg;  Bg abbr.:NARU). She asked to meet university teachers and students at the Speech-and-Hearing Rehabilitation Program, as well as members of the deaf community in Bulgaria. The event was organized by Associate Professor Dr. Neda Balkanska, head of the Speech-and-Hearing Rehabilitation Program at the Special Education and Speech Therapy Department of the Faculty of Educational Studies.

For his students and colleagues, he is just Richapd. He prefers the more informal style of communication. Holder of numerous prizes for contributions to the assistive technology for Deaf and deaf-blind people. Since 1971, he has been a professor at the University of Washington in Seatle (USA). I contacted him for an interview. Richard had a readiness to answer, even something more - showed a lively interest in the situation in Bulgaria about bulgarian sign languagge, technologues and legislations. Today I present to you, dear readers of "We hear you", the enriching and very useful dialogue with this remarkable person. Richard E. Ladner.

Dear readers, for many of the deaf peoples and those who prefer lip reading (hard-of-hearing people), it is a problem to participate in real time face to face conversations. When they talk to individuals or participate in a group conversation with many people involved, it is impossible to follow every person’s speech at the same time. How could people with hearing impairments possibly attend to every single word in a conversation? How can they be active participants, not just mute observers? How could those people spare themselves the discomfort or not miss out on the conversation? Those questions have held the attention of a team of perspective young people from different nations and cultures for a long time. These three young men created the project AVA – mobile application for communication without barriers.