UW Combined Fund Drive

September 19, 2022

September is Deaf Awareness Month

September is Deaf Awareness Month and International Week of the Deaf begins September 20.

The first International Day of the Deaf was first celebrated by the World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) in 1958. The day of awareness was later extended to a full week, becoming the International Week of the Deaf, observed annually throughout the last full week of September (to commemorate the first World Congress of the World Federation of the Deaf, which took place in September 1951).

The purpose of Deaf Awareness Month is to increase public awareness of Deaf issues, people, and culture. The week focuses on promoting the positive aspects of deafness, encouraging social inclusion, and raising awareness of the organizations locally, nationally and globally that support those who are deaf.

Tips for Communicating with People Who Are Deaf/Hard of Hearing

From VeryWellHealth:

  • Make sure to obtain the person’s attention before trying to communicate.
  • Ensure lighting is good; bright enough to see well but not creating shadows on the speaker’s face or shining directly in the other person’s eyes.
  • If speaking, do so clearly and at a normal volume. Do not exaggerate mouth movements or facial expressions. If you have a mustache/beard, be sure it is well-trimmed. Do not cover your mouth with your hands.
  • Check for understanding. If there is a breakdown in communication, figure out another way to say, spell, or write down the main ideas.

Learn more

TedX Talks from Deaf Individuals:

Best DEAF YouTubers to learn ASL and culture:


Consider making a one-time contribution or setting up payroll deduction to one of our member organizations supporting the Deaf community:

Abused Deaf Women’s Advocacy Services (Charity Code 0316138): ADWAS provides comprehensive services to Deaf and Deaf-Blind victims/survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, and stalking.

Alexander Graham Bell Association for Deaf and Hard of Hearing (Charity Code 1479641): is a lifelong resource, support network and advocate for listening, learning, talking and living independently with hearing loss. Through publications, advocacy, training, scholarships and financial aid, AG Bell promotes the use of spoken language and hearing technology.

Deaf Children’s Literacy Project (Charity Code 0524378): Most deaf children are behind in English language and literacy. Reading opens the door to their future. Give them the power of English to succeed.

Deaf Education Advocates Foundation (Charity Code 1478867): The mission of D.E.A.F. is to enhance the deaf and hard of hearing children and youth in Washington State. D.E.A.F. raises funds in support of Washington State Center for Childhood Deafness and Hearing Loss.

Deaf Spotlight (Charity Code 1481160): Deaf Spotlight inspires, encourages, and showcases creative works of, by, and for Deaf people in the Pacific Northwest through events that celebrate Deaf culture and American Sign Language.

Deaf-blind Service Center (Charity Code 0315928): Advocacy, information, training and job support services for adults who are both deaf and blind. Assistance for parents of young Deaf-Blind children.

Dogs for Deaf and Disabled Americans/NEADS (Charity Code 0456610): Independence and companionship for wounded warriors, autistic children, the deaf and disabled by providing custom-trained Service Dogs. Help provide these much needed Service Dogs.

Hearing, Speech and Deaf Center (Charity Code 0320822): Hearing, Speech and Deaf Center HSDC is a Western Washington service hub for people with hearing and speech challenges. Our mission is to foster inclusive, accessible communities through communication, advocacy, and education.

Washington State Deaf Senior Citizens (charity code 1482068): Our purpose to serve as an advocate for Deaf Seniors by providing information and education programs to enhance their physical, economic and social wellbeing, and to other wise promote the common interest of Deaf Seniors in the State of Washington.