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Record intake for Tanzanian Sign Language course

Published Date: 24 Nov 2021

We recently received a letter from a former partner in Tanzania that shows the success a project we worked on together is achieving.

While deafness is not a learning disability, it is crucial that proper support is available to ensure that education is accessible for deaf students. Our research showed that lack of availability of sign language interpreters was a significant factor contributing to the huge disadvantage that many deaf students at school and university in Tanzania experience compared to their hearing peers..

From 2015 to May 2021 Deaf Child Worldwide partnered with the University of University of Dar es Salaam to develop a training certificate programme in Tanzanian Sign Language. This was the first institution in the country to run such a course.

We also worked together to develop, disseminate and monitor the use of proposed guidelines for teaching deaf young people and children using Tanzania Sign Language, which were piloted in schools by Tanzania’s Ministry of Education.

We were delighted to receive a letter from the University of Dar es Salaam last month letting us know that the 2021/2022 course had the largest intake so far (32 students) and that the university is now planning to develop a Bachelor’s degree course for sign language interpreters.

Joanna Clark, director of Deaf Child Worldwide says: ‘’More sign language interpreters will mean that deaf children and young people can understand not only their schooling but also communicate when receiving healthcare, understand the news, watch important government updates and participate in community events like attending to religious services.

‘’We wish the University of Dar Es Salaam every success for the continuation of this course and the creation of its Tanzanian Sign Language degree.’’