News Article

Deaf Awareness Week

Deaf Awareness Week 2024 will take place from 6 to 12 of May. The UK Council on Deafness created Deaf Awareness Week to increase the visibility of challenges the deaf community face and educate others on how they can support them. 

Being deaf brings unique challenges that not everyone will experience, but these challenges are experienced by about 1 in 6 people. 7 in 10 people affected by hearing loss are over 70 which is expected to increase by 50% in the next 20 years. 

This week-long event provides an opportunity for individuals and organisations to come together and support the Deaf community, learn about their experiences, and work towards a more inclusive and accessible society. Deaf Awareness Week is a time to celebrate diversity, promote understanding, and build a more inclusive world for all. 

This year's theme is 'Love and Trust' and has a focus of transcending barriers and uniting hearts in the spirit of understanding and compassion. The deaf community, like any other, faces its share of challenges. But amidst the chaos, there exists a profound beauty in the language of love and trust that resonates within it. This year, this is not just a celebration of deafness, but of resilience, love, and the unwavering trust that binds this community together. 

We have reached out to KCL British Sign Language (BSL) Society who explain a little about what they do and their aims with this society. 

We are KCL British Sign Language (BSL) Society. We are a society whose aims are to raise the awareness of deaf culture and British Sign Language and to build relationships between the KCL student body and the wider London deaf community. 

Our awareness talks are at the core of what we do and involve external speakers from a range of different careers and backgrounds signing about their experiences as deaf or hard of hearing individuals. As part of the various Liberation History Festivals (Black History Month, LGBTQ+ History Month, Disability Awareness Month) we aim to organise lectures exploring the intersectionality of being both deaf and a member of another minority group. All lectures are fully interpreted between BSL and spoken English.  

We additionally run weekly 'Introduction to BSL' courses that allow beginners to learn some basic conversational BSL. The course consists of weekly in-person classes and group practice sessions over the course of the year. The classes are led by more experienced KCL BSL committee members. 

We have also partnered with the Deaf charity 'Deaf Unity', to offer subsidised Level 1 and 2 BSL courses. These accredited courses are taught by amazing deaf tutors. 

Lastly, we also organise social events such as movie nights, trips to a local deaf café and interuniversity BSL social and awareness events. 


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