UZ students commemorate International Deaf Awareness Week
Reginald Chirenje Youth Interactions Writer
This year’s International Week of deaf people runs from 19 to 25 September.
It is a time where people come together to recognise and celebrate the deaf community.
This year’s celebration’s theme is “Building Inclusive Communications For All”.
It’s a time for deaf people to feel connected to different communities and it helps them to connect with the hearing people.
People can become more educated about how to communicate with the deaf, contributing to positive change and breaking down stereotype barriers on such special days.
University of Zimbabwe students from the Faculty of Sciences have been offering communication services within the deaf community, interacting and creation of authography medical dictionaries to be used in the medical domain.
The students having identified problems of communication within the medical domain, it lead them to come up with such a brilliant idea which supports inclusivity.
True or correct diagnosis starts from the case history, which makes the language of paramount importance in which the deaf must not be relegated.
Science students having been motivated by their “Change Maker Award Winner” Mr Matende, they are currently complying medical terms together with Sunrise Sign Language Academy making efforts to come up with a Sign Language Medical dictionary.
Such efforts are being made as a way of bridging the communication gap between the deaf patients and the hearing medical practitioners.
“Education 5.0 will remain a pipeline dream and it shall be a futile exercise only if it relegates the deaf community and their language to the periphery.
Zimbabwe is an open and just society where linguistic rights are prioritized.
The Deaf Awareness Month is an opportunity to appreciate Zimbabwe Sign Language and the joys, the deaf culture can bring” Mr Matende, the lecturer said.
The students are making efforts in promoting inclusivity and community engagement in the society.
“We have made choreographic gospel and circular songs. We believe this can be effective especially with the use of social media platforms such as Tik Tok which enables video sharing globally” Mitchell Dzamare, a student added.
“ We are making efforts with aspiring medical practitioners to create a Medical Sign Language Dictionary which I believe will help and bridge language barriers in the medical field,” said Kimberly Malunga, another student.
Hence there are many different ways to celebrate International week of Deaf people.
These include learning basic signs of the language, having an understanding on how deaf people live, identifying things they feel need to be improved in a society.
All these can help the hearing community to step in the shoes of deaf people and understand how they can get involved through campaigns and petitions.