Motivating and Inspiring Young Deaf Learners Project

Published: Oct 12th, 2015

Big LotteryDeaf Unity has been awarded £9,000 from the Big Lottery Fund of the National Lottery to run a ‘Motivating and Inspiring Young Deaf Learners’ Project’. The project will train 20 Deaf Alumni and graduates from higher and further education institutions throughout the UK to mentor and inspire other deaf learners to pursue learning success.

Over the next coming months, Deaf Unity will be engaging with a range of Further and Higher Education providers to run a series of deaf-led mentoring training days in 2016.

Tackling Common Fears

The training days will draw upon our experiences of running the Deaf Learners Conference in 2013, the first Deaf Careers Fair in 2014, and the first deaf-friendly Model United Nations Conference in late 2014.

Following our Deaf Learners Conference, we found that while student numbers – including disabled student numbers -have risen in the past 6 years, the opposite is true for deaf people in Further and Higher Education, largely because of fears over communication, support, and study access.

Deaf Unity aims to solve this challenge through matching deaf learners with successful Deaf Alumni who have had similar experiences. At present, there are few deaf mentors in further and higher education to engage with deaf students to improve their learning success.

Deaf Unity’s CEO Abdi Gas said:

“Deaf Unity is proud to announce another innovative activity, which is not only the first in the UK, but also potentially in Europe. The rationale behind this event is one of the many reasons for having established Deaf Unity.

“This event has been entirely deaf inspired, deaf led, deaf organised, and deaf presented. It is a true reflection of what the united and supported deaf community is able to achieve and an example of the vast range of the under-utilised skills and talents that exists within the deaf community. Such successes can only be achieved through partnership working with the wider community that involves employers and education providers.”

If you are a trainer from higher or further education, and have experience in mentoring or working with a deaf audience, click here to apply. If you are a young deaf learner who would like to take part, find out more here.

Notes to editors

  1. Deaf Unity is a deaf learning and development charity that was established by Abdi Gas, the current Chief Executive Officer in 2010. The aim of the charity is to address the specific learning and development challenges facing the deaf community as a whole that he has experienced.
  2. Deaf Unity has been running a series of projects and events such as the Deaf Learners Conference, Deaf Careers Fair, and Deaf Friendly Model United Nations Conference to address the challenges facing the Deaf Community. Deaf Unity welcomes a range of people to take part in its many projects.

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One Response to “Motivating and Inspiring Young Deaf Learners Project”

  1. M says:

    Well done, Deaf Unity.

    I think higher education opportunity should go hand in hand with job opportunities for deaf people. I could report that many agencies for junior jobs are not deaf friendly, as deaf people do not fit in a neat box and agencies assume that their clients would not employ deaf people. Employer organisations need to manage agencies proactively and start asking questions why diversity is not reflected in agencies’ selection of candidates.

    It is also clear to me that some selection process is unknowingly disadvantage to deaf people, such as group discussions. Even if the potential employer provides a BSL interpreter, it is not very easy for deaf people to lead group discussions and activities as they are constantly in a catching up mode.

    Newspapers report skills shortage, and I think there is a pool of people, with some support and awareness, who can be deployed.

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