In order to become more Deaf-friendly, Sagamore Hill National Historic Site in Oyster Bay, N.Y., partnered with Mill Neck Services to teach their employees American Sign Language (ASL).
Joshua Reyes, Chief of Interpretation at Sagamore Hill, who took ASL in college, was always drawn to Sign Language, and was looking for a way to incorporate Deaf friendly components into the park’s programs.
After Reyes received an Albright-Wirth grant—an internal grant for park service employees funded by the national park foundation—he applied it toward Sign Language classes for employees.
Reyes connected with Mill Neck Services through the MNS’ Director for Policy and Advocacy, Loretta Murray, and began a 10-session Sign Language class for Sagamore employees taught by Mill Neck Alumni Janice Buonincontri.
“Now that the staff has gotten some basic Sign Language instruction, I think they will be eager to use it,” said Reyes.