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Our History


Some people believe that CODA activities have only really started in the last couple of years but this is not true. The organisation known as CODA International was formed in 1983, in the USA, by Millie Brother and has members all over the world.

How it all started here:
The first international CODA meeting was at WFD in Finland 1987 resulted in the term being brought back to the UK. As part of the 1990 BDA (British Deaf Association), 100 year anniversary Conference Deaf parents joined with CODAs to discuss and set up a group to support Deaf families in London and establish the CODA identity. A series of newsletters were produced as a result of this grouping, like a small Deaf Club but for adult hearing children of Deaf adults, called HMFD (Hearing Me, Mother Father Deaf).




Spreading the word:

In 2004 the first CODA-Europe was hosted in Ireland and a CODA Presentation was given at the Centre for Deaf Studies Conference. A DVD was produced in Northern Ireland that included CODA perspective in regard to the acquisition of language through the use of Sign Language. The academic literature is starting to recognise the potential position of CODAs in the Deaf Community, there was also growing media attention, but it was clear more was needed to come from our, unique, CODA perspective to be able to have the discussions and ask the questions about our place in the world.

A new wind:
In 2007 annual conferences were being organised by the next generation of CODAs, in 2008 they became new columnists for the BDNs “Between Two Cultures” and individuals became involved in research into CODAs; their language and culture. After various stages of transition and development in 2012 CODA UK and Ireland became a CIC with 6 Board Members and a growing membership body. CODA today has a vastly growing membership base, has set up several workshops across the country and CODA UK and Ireland have also hosted a well attended International CODA conference with many delegates from 15 different countries. We have also established a CODA camp which as of 2020 is in its 8th year. We set up the first European Adult CODA camp in 2017 so that it wasn't only children who had all the fun! This is a very brief history and is by no means definitive. We do feel that it serves as an example that CODA is not just a new trend, but a vital part of Deaf society and an area that is growing ever more as more and more CODAs find out about this organisation and therefore about themselves.

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