Sign language helps close gap for hearing impaired

National 1 minute, 57 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

LEARNING sign language is important as it will close the gap between those who are with hearing impairment and the other members of the community, said a National Association of the Deaf (OKP) committee member.

Aziz Assan, who is under OKP’s education section, said sign language is an important language to have as it will allow people to communicate with those who are hearing impaired.

“There is a huge gap between the deaf society and others, so if you know sign language, you can communicate with them and understand them, which will close the gap,” he told _The Brunei Times _during the closing ceremony of the Hearing Awareness Charity Bazaar 2016, which is part of the Better Hearing, Better Living charity project.

He believes that many locals are not yet equipped with sign language skills and knowledge; therefore he hopes more people will learn.

He added that some parents of children who are with hearing impairment do not have sign language knowledge and understanding.

Aziz encouraged parents to teach their young children sign language at an early age which will result in them understanding the language as they grow older.

“If you talk with the children, use sign language as well because over time they will understand it.

“That is what we insist from parents,” he said.

He said knowing sign language will also help them when meeting a person who is hearing impaired.

Aziz went on to say that OKP does provide sign language classes for the public who are interested at the Youth Centre in the capital. He added the public can also purchase the ‘Sign Language Guide Book’.

Noorafzah Ahmad, the project manager of the charity project said the five-day event was aimed to raise more awareness about the ‘human sensors’ and inform the public on what they can do if they face hearing impairment challenges.

“There are still a lot of people who don’t know where to go (if they have hearing impairment or they have children who are hearing impaired).

“This is to make people more aware and know how to deal with the situation if ever they come across it,” she said.

The event is a joint effort by the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education, DST and the Hear Better Services Company. The annual project included exhibitions and activities.

The Brunei Times