SEATTLE — According to the World Health Organization, there are 32 million children with hearing loss in the world, 80 percent of whom live in developing countries. From Kenya to Haiti, these deaf children are often times denied food, shelter, water, clothing and education opportunities. Through sponsorship and partnership programs, a group of dedicated missionaries strives to provide hope for people living in deaf poverty.
Founded in 2010, Deaf Child Hope International is a nonprofit created by a team of individuals who recognize that deaf children in developing countries require aid. Deaf children require specific care, whether it be sign language-based education or special medical attention.
On average, deaf and hard-of-hearing children who live in poverty very rarely receive an education. The lack of accessible education has long-term ramifications on deaf people in poverty, such as poor employment rates and reduced opportunities to succeed.
Deaf Child Hope notes that oftentimes developing countries do not understand the causes and effects of deafness on children in poverty, which, according to their website “can result in these deaf children being outcast and isolated.”
This nonprofit works by connecting with other mission and ministry organizations that are currently working with children in deaf poverty. From here, Deaf Child Hope provides the necessary tools and resources in order to create opportunities for these deaf and hard-of-hearing children. For example, Deaf Child Hope recently supplied new sandals, shoes and socks to deaf children in Kenya.
Similar to the nonprofits Compassion and Children International, Deaf Child Hope International has a sponsorship program through which a donor can sponsor a specific deaf child in countries such as Uganda, Kenya, Vietnam, Haiti or Mexico. The money goes towards providing these children in deaf poverty a means of food, shelter, clothing and education. Additionally, Deaf Child Hope International has introduced a teacher sponsorship program, which sends money to teachers who provide sign language-based education to deaf children in poverty.
Most recently, Deaf Child Hope International helped create a new dining hall for Lance’s Deaf Orphans (LDO) in Kenya. In compliance with health codes, Kenyan officials told LDO that it needed a new dining hall. Working alongside the dedicated staff members and volunteers at LDO, Deaf Child Hope was able to raise money to construct the dining hall, which helped the orphanage remain open.
By providing these types of opportunities and creating sponsorship programs designed specifically for deaf children, organizations such as Deaf Child Hope International will improve the lives of many hard of hearing and deaf people living in developing countries.
– Morgan Leahy