Lady Sara writes:
All Call to Silent Heralds and Signers
Greetings to the populace of Aethelmearc and the Known World!
It is time to begin preparing for Pennsic XXXV. The Chirurgeons have asked me to be in charge of the Chirurgeon/Silent Herald program this year. This will be a continuation of the pilot program that began at Pennsic XXXIV. In this program, the Silent Heralds and Chirurgeons work side by side during four hour shifts at Chirurgeons Point. The purpose of this program is to allow the Chirurgeons and Silent Heralds to become accustomed to working with each other and following the proper procedures. This process allows everything to go smoothly if an individual who is deaf or hearing impaired needs treatment and Silent Heraldry services.
The Silent Heraldry Program will also be continuing at Pennsic XXXV. Last year, Aethelmearc not only provided services for our own Kingdom, but assisted three other kingdoms as well. While it brings me great joy to know that many people in the SCA are able to better understand and enjoy events, I also need to ask for your help.
Pennsic is a very large event for just two Silent Heralds. If you are a warranted Silent Herald or are interested in becoming a Silent Herald, please contact me prior to Pennsic. We will be happy to have your assistance, even if all you can do is fingerspell. One can obtain a vast amount of knowledge and satisfaction from working with experienced Silent Heralds and helping individuals in need.
There are also many ways that both signers and non-signers can make Pennsic and other events enjoyable for everyone. First, please remember that deafness and hearing impairments are medical conditions. Silent Heralds and Chirurgeons are bound by a code of ethics and confidentiality. We cannot discuss who we are serving and their specific disability with anyone unless we are given permission by that individual. Second, understand that Silent Heralds are also bound to serve even if there is only one individual who is deaf or hearing impaired present. This practice insures that everyone has the opportunity to enjoy the event and participate to the fullest extent possible. Finally, please help the Silent Heralds by making sure they are visible at all times. If we are blocked by barriers (i.e. banners, bows, bards, other bodies), those who need our services have little or no idea what is being said and/or done during a court, battle, etc.
February marks the third year of existence for the Aethelmearc Silent Herald Program. I would like to thank all of you who have helped us get this far. To all of the out-of-Kingdom signers who have assisted at Pennsic and other events, you have my deepest thanks and appreciation. To all of the people who have offered the Silent Heralds food, water, shelter, and more during our travels and hard work at events, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. We could not have served individuals in need without you.
In Service and Friendship,
Lady Sara de Lindley
Aethelmearc Chief Silent Herald
Silver Buccle Deputy