SCAC- Speak Clear Association of Cameroon


Updated: Sep 23, 2004









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ISA - International Stuttering Association


The SCAC is gradually gaining the recognition and admiration of the International Stuttering Community. Recently, she was represented at the 7th triennial congress for people who stutter and the general assembly meeting of the International Stuttering Association, ISA that took place in Perth Western Australia. Joseph Lukong represented the SCAC at this international come together and in recognition for the work that the SCAC has been doing for people who stutter both in and out of Cameroon, Joseph Lukong was elected into the board of Directors of the International Stuttering Association, the ISA for the a mandate of three years. The SCAC was also chosen during this congress to host an African stuttering conference in October 2005 that she would be organizing with the support of the INTERNATIONAL STUTTERING ASSOCIATION, ISA. The conference will bring together people who stutter, speech professional and researchers from Africa and the other parts of the world and an important project called INTERNATIONAL
SPEECH PROJECT-STUTTERING (ISP-S) will be launched. This project aims at making stuttering speech therapy services available to many nations of the developing world.
The SCAC is very appreciative to the Australian SPEAK EASY ASSOCIATION and the INTERNATIONAL STUTTERING ASSOCIATION that assisted its delegate to make the long trip to Australia for this congress. It is hope that SCAC will be represented again at the next world
congress for people who stutter that is billed for Croatia in September 2007.



The activities marking the 2002 edition of the International stuttering awareness Day ISAD started here in Cameroon on Saturday the 19th of October 2002,
with a radio broadcast over one of the radio stations here in Douala(CRTV), of the interview Joe Lukong the Coordinator General of SCAC did the previous day with a journalist of that radio station. Joe talked about stuttering in the world, Cameroon , what SCAC was doing to better the situation of stuttering people in
Cameroon and the world and about the activities of ISAD that were coming up on Tuesday the 22 of October.
In the evening some 29 SCAC members dressed in their SCAC T shirts, went to the Douala International Airport to receive Clare Thomas from the Fluency Trust of the Uk who was coming to share her speech therapy knowledge with stuttering persons in Cameroon. Before Clare's arrival, SCAC members talked to many persons in the airport about stuttering and the work of SCAC.
On Sunday 20th October, Clare and some SCAC members attended church services  and during the service 20 minutes was given to Clare and the other
SCAC members to talk about stuttering and the work of SCAC and her activities for ISAD 2002.
On Monday the 21st SCAC members and calre visited some schools in Douala and talked to many teachers of PWS and left out hand outs having useful information on stuttering. It should be noted that some 2768 stuttering children
have been identified by SCAC volunteers with the help of parents and educational authorities in three towns in Cameroon.
  On Tuesday the 22nd of October, SCAC members dressed in their T Shirts assembled at the SCAC office and collected some information sheets on stuttering and the questionnaires that we had been prepared with
the help of Clare to use for that day. We did a walk of more than 20 km around the major spots in Douala and talked to many people. We ended by addressing a large crowd at a bus station in Douala and in the evening we had a round table discussion on the topic LET YOU STUTTERING NOT HOLD YOU DOWN.
On Wednesday the 23 Clare did  a training session for some 20 SCAC volunteers who will work with some PWS. Clare who specializes in stuttering children shared her wealth of experience with many people here in Cameroon.

Distribution of information packages to our volunteers who where to go out to do the ISAD walk in some streets here talking to people about stuttering.


Volunteers snapped infront of our office and meeting place before going to the streets on that day.


After the walking and talking in the street we addressed a crowd at a moto park here and later went to a near by rest house for a drink and finished discussing about our round table conference that was to take place that evening


Mothers of stuttering children who where happy to listen to the talk our guest and therapist who specializes in children who stutter from the UK had given them.


Our journey to the ISA family ...
How it all started.

This article is written for those our very dear and special friends who stood by our side and guided us during this year's online discussion on stuttering and supported our candidature for admission as a member of the Great Family of the INTERNATIONAL STUTTERING ASSOCIATION (ISA). It would be appropriate for me to make a brief review of how we travelled to join this great and wonderful family. After we had successfully created th 'SPEAK CLEAR ASSOCIATION OF CAMEROON SCAC' and obtained recognition from the competent government departement here, this being the Ministry of Interior or what in some countries is called the Ministry of Home Affairs, a proverb in my mother tongue immediately came over to my mind which I decided to put into practise with the hope that it would give me the expected benificial results as has always been the case when I apply this proverb to all my ventures.
This proverb is BOYOO DZE KIWO-OH KIMO-ON KIKUR KIFAH'. It is in the lamnso dialect, one of the more than 250 dialects spoken here in Cameroon. Translated into English language as 'ONE HAND CANNOT TIE A BUNDLE'. The proverb was derived from common sense knowledge which is to the effect that one person alone cannot succeed to do a majortask, but when two persons come together as one, it is possible for them to do several tasks. United they can even cause valleys and mountains to move.

SCAC having this belief in mind and with her mission of empowering, it's members here, she decided to knock at the doors of both local and intentional sister associations that could collaborate with her to achieve this mission. We knocked at the great door of BV STOTTERER SELBSTILFE of Germany and Konrad Schaefers of that association answered our call. Immediately he answered our call and sent to us very valuable books and handouts in both the German and English languages. This literature has been of immense assistance to us for apart from the book LET'S TALK STAMMERING', we had no other book that we could use as a source of our reference. Thanks a lot Schaefers. He didn't just end there but, immediately transmitted our call to Stefan Hoffmann, ISA Vice Chairman and officer responsible for OUTREACH activities for that association. From far off China, Stefan answered our call. He sent to us a document of several pages containing valuable information concerning ISA and the various addresses of it's Board members. He informed us of ISAD (October 22) which we had never heard of before and informed us that he was to contact Michael Sugarman, Chair person of ISAD to send to us some posters from ISAD 2001. Shortly afterwards, Michael informed us that he had asked Amy Johnson to send those materials to us. Johnson's reaction was immediate - the said materials were dispatched immediately in the next flight that was destined for Africa and within the shortest time we had them. Thanks very much Stephan, Mike and Johnson for we have received those materials and proper use has been made of them and the public here through those posters pasted in several positions in (Douala) Cameroon, many people are already aware of stuttering and ISAD. From Stefan's letter to us, we discovered that one of ISA's priority is to outreach people in several areas of the world - Africa included.

What was SCAC to, do about it's admission into ISA ? We reflected very much on this. We are still a very young organisation and still struggling to stand on our feet. Could we fulfill the required conditions for admission ? If admitted are we going to measure up with much bigger, well structured and organised associations from other parts of the world notably those of the Western world ? We decided to email ISA's chairman Dr. Mark Irwin and to hear from him - Stephan even suggested we contact him. No immediate reply was coming from Dr. Mark to our two appeals. We started losing all hopes. SCAC cannot be admitted was our feeling and a feeling of frustration.

As we were losing hope gradually comforting news came to us all the way from Canada, from Jaan Pill of the CAPS. How did he come to know us ? ... through the usual benevolent Stephan who had sent copies of our letters sent to him to Jaan. Do you know what Jaan did with our letters ? He placed them at the websites of caps- very big publicity for us indeed. Thank you a million Jaan. Jaan also put me in touch with Daniel of Uganda, another African like myself with whom I hope to share rich information on stuttering from our respective countries as we have a somewhat, very similar cultural background.
On the 30th of September still our Stefan wrote to us to announce the starting on 1st October of this year's online discussion on stuttering. That was very good news to other to whom he had addressed the message. It was bad news for us of SCAC. I can hear you asking what's bad in that news. It wasn't the news itself that was bad, but the fact that we could participate in the online discussion on stuttering with interesting papers from all over the world because we are having no access to the web sites. I, Fabian, Florence and Peter reasoned over this issue for quite some hours. At last Fabian came up with an idea. 'Joe' he said 'I have got an idea'. 'What idea, boy ?' was my question. 'Let's inform Stefan, Jaan, Johnson about our handicap and maybe they can have and idea on what to do for us to participate in the conference.' 'Would that not be over asking from these people who have done enough for us, let's not override a willing horse to death' was Florence's own view. After debating for some time, our views overshadowed Flo's and I sent emails to these gentlemen to inform them of our handicap. In the mean time I had seen from the message sent to us by Stefan that if any person had problems concerning operating the website, he should contact Ms Judy Kuster whom he described as the 'FOUNDER OF THE CONFERENCE'.
I then took a rather timid decision to contact Judy whom I did not know and posed to her the problems I had - that of having access to the website. That was Monday evening and after sending my message to Judy, she replied and informed me that she was to send me copies of the past conferences on the CD-roms and some books on stuttering. I am still waiting for the said materials but I have made arrangement with one gentleman here to use his computer to play the CD-roms for those past conference. (I hope and pray that Judy should even still sent that of this year's conference to me since I did not have all the papers presented). Still, Judy accepted to copy questions from the conference and to post them directly into my box and any questions or comments I had were to be sent to her to have them posted to the persons concern. Similar answers came from Jaan and Johnson. Judy was very cooperative to me all through the conference. My questions as well as that of other SCAC members were posted to the various presenters and our answers sent to my box. What gymnastics she played to have our answers and questions from and to the various presenters is what I do not know. Through her I had answers from Russ, Tom, Dr. Denis, Mike, Louis and others. She is actually a 'wonderful' lady if I can be permitted by Russ to borrow his words to describe her. Avery mighty thank you to you Judy. Same to Johnson who sent many articles to my box.
Jaan, you made me and SCAC to feel that we 'aren't alone' but we are actually with great friends like you. And that 'one hand alone can not tie a bundle'. I hope you agree with me as far as that is concern. Jaan sent the highes number of articles into my box during this conference. One particular day on opening my box it was discovered that I had 67 unread messages and about 64% of this number was from Jaan. A great job indeed that Jaan did for us. I can admit that since I started working for SCAC these past three weeks have been the busiest I have ever had moving from the telephone booth with the internet to my house and the residence of Gara Peter that we use as our temporal working place. Printing and sending of mails was also a very great handicap I had. My Special friends had sent the required stuff but how was I to have all retrieved from the computer as my resources were already getting dried off especially considering the quantity that had been sent ? Fabian and Peter gave me the needed resources at the moment most needed - all the articles sent to us have been completely retrieved from the computer. Thanks too, to the understanding and cooperation given us by Pascaline and Louis of the Internet servcie who gave us a 5 % reduction on the papers we printed or sent. I have to say a big thank you to them and hope they will still cooperate with us during next years online conference so that we can participate - many of us from SCAC.
As the conference was gradually going to an end, and we had almost forgotten about our request for admission into ISA, the news came like a bomb and from the Voice of ISA chairman himself right over there from Australia SCAC HAS BEEN ADMITTED INTO ISA and a mentor appointed to help supervise our growth. There was total joy in all SCAC members after they got this news. News of this was sent to our special friends and all of them reacted very favourable to this news. On celebrating ISAD 2001 yesterday, we were also celebrating our admission into SCAC. We shall still discuss during our bi-monthly meeting of 28th October 2001, how we shall celebrate with members of the public our admission into ISA. When we shall have a report on how ISAD was celebrated in our Kumbo Ward, we shall then compile a final report and send to you people.
Dear Special friends, I know that I have been long in this article, but this is just due to the joy I have in me. I know most of you have worked hard during this period of the conference and might surely deserve some rest. The only plea that SCAC is sending to you is that after this conference you people, I mean our good ladies and gentlemen should not forget us. We shall still be depending on your usual support for us to grow. We have just crossed on river in our long journey having several other rivers to cross in our struggler to empower the situation of stutterers here. Let's just have as a target the fact of bettering the situation of stutterers all over the world and note should be taken of the fact that anywhere in this global village where the situation of stutterers is still not good, will be a thread to everywhere where the situation of stutterers is already improved. SCAC will do all it can to better the conditions of stutterers here and why not create contacts for ISA in the neighbouring countries around the Central African sub region here. Thanks a lot for your cooperation

Joseph Lukong, Coordinator General of SCAC


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