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300 people participated in a flashmob performance to raise awareness towards the role of sign language in Deaf education

Hanoi, December 13, 2015 – At the event “Family Fun Day: The Beautiful Hands” which took place in Hanoi today, around 300 people, including Deaf children and their families, Deaf adults and those who are interested in Deaf Community, participated in the first snf biggest sign language flash mob performance in Vietnam. The event was held by the Intergenerational Deaf Education Project – IDEO  with the purpose of raising awareness of the society towards the importance of Sign language in early Deaf education. IMG_9568 In Vietnam, there are around 15.500 under 6 year old children who are Deaf or hard of hearing. Most of them do not have access to pre-school education while their parents lack necessary professional assistance. “Not teaching sign language to Deaf children in the first 6 years in their life can hinder their ability to develop and cause difficulties for them to approach future integration and education opportunities, said Ms. Le Thi Kim Cuc, Program Manager of IDEO Project.   The IDEO Project is funded by the Japanese Social Development Fund, entrusted to the management of the World Bank and implemented by World Concern Development Organization and Ministry of Education and Training from 2011 to 2016.  This has been the first and the only project in Vietnam so far targeting the group of pre-school Deaf children. As a result of the project, 255 Deaf children under 6 years old in 4 cities/provinces including Thai Nguyen, Hanoi, Quang Binh and Ho Chi Minh city have learned sign language through home – based lessons, so that they can get ready for a new study environment.   “For pre-school Deaf children, family is the environment they interact with the most and learn the very first knowledge. Therefore, parents should accompany and support their children in this period to help them have the best preparation for Grade 1”, said Ms. Vu Lan Anh, Educational Specialist, The World Bank Group in Vietnam.   At the Family Fun Day, people had opportunities to hear touching stories of Deaf children’s parents about their journeys of assisting their kids to communicate and study through sign language. Thanks to this, not only have they sympathized and understood Deaf children and their families better, but they have also recognized the necessity of  sign language in the development of Deaf children in their early years. Several Deaf adults also shared their personal successes and career stories in order to inspire the parents and the children. Tiết mục văn nghệ của trẻ Điếc Besides, participants also took part in a variety of experience games with Deaf people and enjoyed exciting musical sign language performances by teachers, Deaf children and their parents. IMG_9497(1) Singer Hoang Bach, the Goodwill Ambassador of the event shared: “My family and I have heard many stories, met a lot of Deaf children and learned sign language. Watching them perform role-play confidently on the stage in their own language, as a father and also a teacher, I felt sympathized with their parent’s happiness and belief. If we hearing people use spoken language, Deaf children use the language of their hands. They are as smart and loveable as other children, and I think their language is a beautiful and miracle language”.

Ngày 13.12.2015