Businesses from across Doncaster have taken part in a special session to mark this year’s Deaf Awareness Week.
Representatives from organisations from across the borough joined together at Doncaster Deaf Trust to learn how their business could become Deaf Aware and support people who are deaf, hard of hearing or have communication difficulties.
Bobbie Roberts, chair of Trustees at Doncaster Deaf Trust said: “We were pleased to see Doncaster Racecourse, Doncaster Culture and Leisure Trust and Doncaster Rovers join with Lakeside Village, Doncaster Sheffield Airport, Virgin Trains, Doncaster Council, CAST, Doncaster Chamber, Doncaster Ambassadors, and Johnston Press and Right Up Our Street to learn about the issues that face Deaf people.
“The group were given handy details to help them to communicate effectively with Deaf customers who use their service or visit their business.
“They all learned a few basic signs and were shown signs that were pertinent to their organisation. We hope that session will have inspired them to find out more and for their organisations to become Deaf Aware.
“Today sees the launch of our new official Doncaster Deaf Trust Deaf Aware stamp of approval.
“We are thrilled to give this award to CAST and Lakeside Village who have already been on our Deaf Awareness training sessions and hope to see many more organisations following suit.”
It is estimated that there are about nine million people in the UK who are Deaf or hard of hearing and Deafness is the third most common disability in the world. Most Deaf people who use sign language use British Sign Language, or BSL. It’s a rich combination of hand gestures, facial expressions and body language.
Alan Robinson, executive principal of Doncaster Deaf Trust said: “To see so many businesses from the town come out and give their time to learn a little about Deaf Awareness was fantastic.
“It is hard to imagine the frustrations a Deaf person faces on a daily basis when trying to go about their normal business.
“Sometimes a friendly smile, someone looking at you directly and trying to communicate can make all the difference. In an ideal world we would all sign and be able to communicate. The businesses who attended today are hopefully on the first step of their journey to become Deaf Aware organisations.”
Doncaster Deaf Trust manages Little Learners Day Nursery, Doncaster School for the Deaf, Communication Specialist College Doncaster and Dickson House Children’s Home.
For further information about Doncaster Deaf Trust and the courses on offer visit www.deaf-trust.co.uk