DEAF AWARENESS WEEK 2019
It’s Deaf Awareness Week (DAW) 6th – 12th May 2019, we would like to raise awareness of our work supporting people with hearing loss in Africa. The World Health Organisation estimated 466 million people (5%) worldwide have hearing loss yet two thirds live in countries where there is a lack of hearing loss awareness and few resources in audiology and inclusive education. Sound Seekers is dedicated to make a change and help children and adults with hearing loss in Africa.
DAW is one of the weeks where we can bring to the surface our cause and you can contribute to making an impact on the lives of people who need your support.
HOW TO GET INVOLVED IN DEAF AWARENESS
To be a part of DAW, why not sign up to the several runs on our challenges events page. If running isn’t for you, you can do one of our EXTREME challenges like parachuting or Bungee Jumping! Click here to find out more on our challenge events.
You can always fundraise as an organisation or amongst communities, the MORE the BETTER. Check out some of the examples below:
We would love students and teachers to get involved and fundraise. Why not get the entire to wear blue to show awareness and donate £1. Or the students and make something creative to sell.
We would love university students to get involved by arranging a ‘Uni football tournament’or organising a party for your peers. Why not make fundraising fun and enjoyable for you and your friends?
Who doesn’t like the sound of the church choirs? Set up a singing concert event or friendly church singing competitions to help raise awareness and fundraise.
Corporate (work places)
You can get sponsored for something your colleagues wouldn’t expect you to do! Or organise an fundraising event e.g. a brunch for the entire work staff to enjoy.
All others organisations are welcome
Don’t feel left out, if you have any ideas on fundraising or groups your would like to fundraise with all are very much welcomed!!
If you would like to fundraise for Sound Seekers, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Keep an eye out for updates on our social media and below for news of how we are celebrating Deaf Awareness Week 2019!
Special Needs Teacher Training & After Schools Club in Ndola, Zambia
Special Needs Teacher Training
In March 2019, thanks to the generous support from the British & Foreign School Society, we launched a new project in the only three primary schools with deaf units, out of 54 mainstream schools in Ndola, Zambia. As part of the project, we have now completed a five-day course, delivered by our local partner Zambia Deaf Youth and Women – 30 special needs teachers that work across the three deaf units in Kansenshi, Kamba and Chilengwa Primary Schools, have improved their Zambian sign language skills to increase their fluency in using Zambian sign language, thereby enhancing communication amongst their students and teachers. This course also helped the teachers to further develop their skills in teaching the deaf children in their classrooms to improve the quality of education for their students. The teachers are very happy with the course and recommended that further such courses are delivered to ensure they get the best results from their students.
After School Clubs
To further support inclusion of children with hearing loss, after school clubs involving children from the deaf units as well as in the mainstream schools were established in each of the three schools to improve social inclusion and interaction between the deaf students and the students from the mainstream schools. The after school clubs are led by the special needs teachers, and has a sign language interpreter present to help children from the mainstream students to learn basic Zambian sign language to communicate with their peers. The after schools have been hugely popular, with students from the mainstream schools involved in the clubs are now able to better communicate with learners from the deaf units using basic sign language skills, envisaged to improve communication and social inclusion of the deaf students.
Meet Alick Nkhoma
Our Role Model for Deaf Awareness week is Alick Nkhoma. Alick is a deaf teacher and has been teaching sign language to deaf students at Chilengwa Primary School in Ndola, Zambia, since 2016. Being deaf, Alick faced many challenges within the education system and decided to become a teacher to prevent other deaf students from facing the same challenges he did.
When he was a young boy, Alick contracted malaria and he was admitted to University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka for treatment. By the time he was discharged, he had completely lost his hearing. He started going to a mainstream school but found it difficult to hear and follow the lessons. His parents had to then relocate him to another school where he continued to face many challenges because there were only two teachers who could support him. Alick complained to his parents about not receiving the right support and his parents then enrolled him at St Joseph’s School for the Deaf where he completed his education in 2001.
Alick also sheds light on the stereotypes and stigma associated to being deaf – he reveals that in the past, people in his community were afraid of him and assumed that he would fight them. He has also seen some parents locking their deaf children in the house to hide them from the community.
Alick explains that he now uses his teaching platform to encourage students and to show students and the wider community that being deaf is not an obstacle and with the right support, deaf people can pursue any career they wish to. He hopes that his students see him as an example and potentially follow in his footsteps to fulfil their potential and have bright futures.
Sound Seeker’s Deaf Awareness Week Bake Sale
We had a fun time setting up a bake sale and selling delicious cakes and pastries in our office building to celebrate Deaf Awareness Week 2019 which will help raise awareness about hearing loss in Africa. We managed to raise money which will go towards supporting adults and children access hearing healthcare and education and we also introduced Sound Seekers to many who were unaware about hearing loss in Africa. A special thank you to The Hummingbird Bakery, Marks and Spencer, Tesco and Mr Bakery UK for their support and generosity of providing us with bakery donations.