Film I made
Patrick Speaks has gone viral
Patrick Otema, 15, was born profoundly deaf. In the remote area of Uganda where he lives there are no schools for deaf children, and he has never had a conversation. Raymond Okkelo, a sign language teacher, hopes to change all this and offer Patrick a way out of the fearful silence he has known his whole life. The clip, from my next doc “15 and Learning to Speak”, shows Patrick’s incredibly moving reaction to being taught sign language for the first time.
In only a few days, the clip has been viewed by over a million people.
It has been picked up by major websites such as Reddit, Upworthy, Huffington Post, CNN, People Magazine and Buzzfeed. Thousands of people have commented on how the clip has brought them to tears, many have even written to me about their plans to head to Africa to teach sign language to children. The post has had the biggest impact amongst people in the deaf community, where it has spread like wildfire.
The clip is only part of a 25 minute documentary which captured many other inspirational, transformative moments, out November 21st, on Channel 4.