More than five percent of the South African population has some sort of hearing loss with about 7.5 percent of schoolchildren suffering from varying degrees of hearing loss, according to the South African Hearing Institute.
September is Deaf Awareness Month and to raise awareness, Park Inn by Radisson Cape Town Newlands is running the #Signtember deaf awareness campaign.
The campaign was first introduced in 2016. It’s aimed at educating and destigmatising society’s perceived limitations of people with hearing loss.
In partnership with the Deaf Federation of South Africa, Park Inn by Radisson Cape Town Newlands has employed 19% of hard-of-hearing staff.
Currently, 51% of Park Inn by Radisson Cape Town Newlands is owned by Deaf SA.
Western Cape Deaf SA director, Jabaar Cassiem Mohamed, said, “Our strategy is to get more companies and in various sectors to employ deaf people. If this can be done in Cape Town, it can be replicated in the rest of the country.”
The #Signtember campaign has also educated hearing staff in sign language and hotel guests too.
General manager of Park Inn by Radisson Cape Town Newlands, Carly de Jong, said, “It is important to us to support deaf people in our employ and across South Africa – not just in September but all year long. The number of hard-of-hearing employed by the hotel serves as our commitment to uplifting the deaf community and leading by example.”
You can support the #Signtember campaign by following the hashtag on various social media platforms.