Henriette Hermann Olesen

Henriette Hermann OlesenAs a student in 1995 was placed in a residential home for adult people with congenital deafblindness for my internship. I didn’t know anything about this combinated sensory loss, and what its impact on a human being could be.

But now – 25 years later- working as a staff member, staff trainer, special adviser, specialist under Nordic Counsel, manager of residential homes, and now head of the department of special advice about deafblindness.  I still find myself working to understand the different approaches to the world through touch. It is fascinating, inspiring, and difficult.

Therefore I quickly found out, that working together with colleagues all over the world was necessary to understand and to develop knowledge about this way to be in the world. I have worked with people and knowledge about both congenital and acquired deafblindness. What a blessing to learn every day!

But I know, that my job as a specialist in deafblindness also contains a responsibility to advocate around deafblindness. Because so few people know about this and so many people forget about it very fast. But the people with deafblindness don´t forget, and they are so dependent on the understanding of the surroundings.

DbI has supported this advocacy for many years and is still going very strong to support the knowledge about deafblindness. As a board member and now a Vice President of DbI, I participate with great honor and humbleness.