A Quiet Revolution: The Chameleon Approach
Deepa Shastri and Josef Baines

Tuesday 10 August 6.30pm
Royal Festival Hall (room to be confirmed nearer to date of event)

To book email: deafprofessionals@gmail.com places limited.
Price on door £5, drinks and nibbles provided.

Deepa Shastri and Josef Baines’s presentation will provide a fascinating insight to pressures, challenges and excitement of working as part of the operation to deliver the 2012 Olympic Games and the career journeys that have led them to land their influential job positions. Deepa and Josef have forayed into a wide range of professional fields, collaborating with hearing, deaf and disabled people in an extraordinary array of roles often simultaneously – from a politician, to an actress, to a manager, to a trainer, to social activist. This event will explore the techniques they have learnt to mould themselves into new working environments, learning to adapt and gain rapport with colleagues and clients whilst tactfully building better deaf aware working practices: a technique they have nicknamed the “chameleon approach”. Innovative, passionate, hard working and witty, an evening with this busy pair of rising stars is sure to be an enlightening opportunity for all.


Josef Baines is currently the Chair of the Deaf Community Outreach Team (DCOT) at the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), member of the Olympic Delivery Authority’s (ODA) Gender Equality Steering Group, the Secretary and Executive Officer of UK Deaf Sport (UKDS), and Inclusive Fitness Initiative (IFI) London Training Development Officer for Interactive Ltd.

Josef Baines

Josef completed his MSc Sport Sciences (Sport Psychology) degree in 2008 and obtained a 1st Class BSc (Hons.) Sport Sciences degree five years ago at Brunel University, west London. During the period of 2005-2006, Josef was elected by students at Brunel University to become the Institution’s first deaf President representing 14,000 students. Josef also managed and led the Students’ Union that had a company turnover of £2.8 million per annum and had 150 members of staff. He was also the country’s third deaf president in the National Union of Students’ (NUS) 80-year history, after Craig Crowley (President of the International Committee of Sport for the Deaf [ICSD]) and Dr Natasha Hirst (former NUS President of Wales).

In 2008, Josef was one of the key UKDS Board members in helping secure £150,000 of donations in one week for the GB Deaflympics Team, in preparation for Taipei 2009.

As Chair of the LOCOG DCOT, Josef advises and guides Ticketmaster and LOCOG to become more accessible for the national and international Deaf Community – crucial areas of work that are progressing effectively towards its targets.

Deepa Shastri is an arts access advocate, actress, presenter and social activist and is currently Associate Producer at Unlimited, part of the LOCOG Cultural Olympiad programme.

Deepa Shastri

Deepa studied Business Studies at Coventry University during which she also became well known in the Deaf Community for her acting roles in Rush, Channel 4, Switch for BBC and a short documentary Back to Bombay. She later went on to star in several short films such as the award winning Hands Solo and numerous stage performances.

After university Deepa went on to work for deafPLUS as Contact/Information and Advocacy Officer and then joined the British Deaf Association (BDA) for WISDOM (Wireless Information Services On the Move) European project, to research how to improve communication technology for Deaf people which formed the founding roots for Significan’t. She later joined the BDA Helpline team and worked with Citizens Advice Bureau all over Wales to improve videophone access for deaf people.

Prior to joining Unlimited she worked at STAGETEXT, where she made great impact as Audience Liaison Officer, whilst in addition being involved for 3 and half years with See a Voice project which was to increase captioned and audio described performances in 30 theatres which in the process she  trained over 700 staff to improve customer service and theatre experience for deaf, deafened and hard of hearing patrons as well as visually impaired patrons. This is when Deepa’s passion for the arts began to grow.

Deepa is on the advisory group for Imperial War Museum and a deaf presenter at the Science Museum for Signtific deaf events and a trustee of DeafEthnic Women Association.


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