About DLI

Deaf Literacy Initiative is Ontario’s umbrella organization for literacy in the Deaf and Deaf-Blind community. Our services are accessible and culturally appropriate and include: training, research, networking, and resources.


Our vision is to be a world leader in literacy services to the Deaf and Deaf-Blind community providing professional expertise and innovations in these specialized services.



We collaborate with our partners to advance and empower the Deaf and Deaf-Blind literacy community.


We create innovative tools and resources to enhance literacy within the Deaf and Deaf-Blind community.


We celebrate achievement in the development of literacy in the Deaf and Deaf-Blind community.


We promote literacy for Deaf and Deaf-Blind people with respect, integrity and transparency. 


We inspire practitioners and learners in their literacy journey with our passion and knowledge.



  • Developing accessible training for practitioners and learners in the Deaf and Deaf-Blind literacy agencies

  • Advancing the Deaf and Deaf-Blind literacy field through consultation, research and technology initiatives

  • Producing accessible and culturally relevant learning resources

  • Supporting and advocating for the Deaf and Deaf-Blind literacy community globally

​Deaf Literacy Initiative is a leader in:



Increased Visibility

DLI brings together the Deaf and Deaf-Blind community through outreach and an accessible, Deaf-friendly website.

Increased Technology

DLI advances literacy opportunities by working with the Deaf and Deaf-Blind community in developing online resources and by providing and advocating for necessary equipment.

Financial Dependability

DLI sells goods and services to fund new resources and to provide needed support to the Deaf and Deaf-Blind community.



Deaf Leaders Create Literacy Network


Since 1991, leaders in the Deaf literacy community have worked together to create a literacy network in Ontario.  With the help of many volunteers, GOLD was established and began its very important work…


Our Staff

Chris Kenopic

Executive Director

Chris has 25 years experience as a consumer-driven leader in the not-for-profit sector.

  • Deaf Literacy Initiative – Executive Director

  • Ontario Association of the Deaf –Executive Director

  • Canadian Hearing Society – CEO and President

  • World Congress of the World Federation of the Deaf hosted in Montreal, 2003 – Chair and President

  • Active volunteer serving in many organizations

Anselmo DeSousa

Project Coordinator


Anselmo has 30 years experience serving in the Deaf community.

  • Deaf Literacy Initiative - staff researcher on the Adult Literacy Curriculum for Signposts and the Independence Pathway

  • Office of Provincial Advocacy for Children and Youth - Advocate for Children and Youth

  • ASL instructor, coach and consultant

  • Actor in films, television and theatre, including:

    • Sue Thomas F.B.Eye

    • This is Wonderland

    • I’m Not from Hear

Board of Directors

Christine Nelson
Patrick Cross
Vice Chair
Simone Edwards Forde
Rosemarie Poirier
Krushan Thevarajah
Beth Hutchison
Isolda Garcia


Come volunteer with us!

DLI plans events during the year in Mississauga and Toronto. We need your help to make every event a success.


Deaf Literacy Initiative operates with the generous support of the MAESD Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development.


This Employment Ontario program is funded in part by the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario and through the Canada-Ontario Job Fund Agreement.

©2021 Deaf Literacy Initiative - All Rights Reserved. Charitable Registration #871942579RR0001