IFHOH, I Love You !

Four years ago, there was a very shy girl who had just one year of experience working in the hearing impaired field. She went overseas for the first time to give a presentation to over 600 delegates at the eighth IFHOH Congress. She was lost and waited at the airport in Vancouver, Canada from 6 PM to 12 AM then she asked some people nearby for help in making a phone call, and at last, she arrived at the site of the conference.

Duong Phuong Hanh presenting at IFHOH World Congress in 2008 in Vancouver, with co-presenters Jan-Peter Strömgren, Johan Hammarström, and Ahiya Kamara looking on

Four years ago, she chose to serve the hard of hearing and deaf community as a way of seeking to exit her circumstance at that time. She learned the lesson that “Everything is possible” from the Swedish pilot with hearing impairment, Johan Hammarström, who has been a close friend.

Four years later, the same girl attended the ninth IFHOH Congress in Bergen, Norway, and took on the role of an activist at the national and international levels.

Now she seeks ways for promoting integration for her community and for sharing with her Vietnamese peers on the issues of empowerment, advocacy, independent living and human rights…

Thanks to the many opportunities for participation offered by IFHOH activities, she has come to have more confidence and to clearly know her own personal value.

She has had the good fortune to meet and work with dedicated activists for the community; their efforts have motivated her to fully participate and provide leadership in the movement for persons with disabilities in Vietnam.


The girl of four years ago is me. I have come a long way in my personal development since having opportunities to participate in IFHOH activities and I better understand how to have a good life with hearing loss. At the IFHOH World Congress in Bergen (Norway) in 2012, I felt much more confident!  

I love IFHOH and I am proud to be part of it!

Editor’s Note: In addition to being the newly elected General Secretary of IFHOH, Duong Phuong Hanh is President of APFHD and the Founder/Executive Director of CED.

By Duong Phuong Hanh, IFHOH General Secretary

IFHOH Journal, October, 2012

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