Profile Source: Anonymous
Introduction / History
The Peruvian deaf people can be found living in the poorer sections of the largest cities in Peru. Most live in Lima, the capital, where the majority of resources (though very limited) for the deaf can be found. There are only two secondary schools in the whole country where the deaf can learn through sign language but, after that, they are on their own. However, most deaf Peruvians do not even finish school because they cannot afford to or they live too far away from established schools for the deaf. They need more interpreters who can assist them in hospitals, courts, churches, and schools, etc.
Most Peruvian deaf people are unemployed or receive lower than minimum wage. Their life is a daily struggle of trying to understand and be understood. They are often looked down upon by hearing society. Sometimes there is even discrimination within their deaf community based on the variation of signing that is used. Despite this, there is still a great deal of camaraderie among the deaf, often more so than with their biological families. The deaf people look out for each other and consider each other as family, even if they've never met. They are known to travel long distances for deaf gatherings.
When asked, the deaf people in Peru said they adhered to the same religion as their parents, although they may not fully understand what that religion entails because they never had it explained to them through a language they clearly understood. The deaf people who did understand their religious beliefs and practices were those who had been reached by the Jehovah's Witness and Evangelicals, who teach using a form of Peruvian Sign Language. Deaf Peruvians need people who can tell them about God and His great love for them through Peruvian Sign Language.