The Deaf Bulletin 2015 Issue 9

The Deaf Bulletin 2015 Issue 9

Money matters; do we care about the education of children with disabilities.

The national budget is an important mirror which one shows the priorities of a country. Deaf Zimbabwe Trust noted with shock that the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education had been allocated $20 000 to targeted initiatives for learn-er support in 2016. This comes at a time when the Ministry has embarked on the introduction of a new curriculum for Zimbabwe. Missing in the priorities is the introduction of a sign language syllabus for Deaf and hard of hearing children and a focus on more visible forms of disabilities.

If we are serious about inclusion, this inclusion must be seen in the way we allocate resources as a nation. We need to take the education of children with disabilities more seriously and until we do so we will not be able to meet the targets we have set for ourselves as a contry.

Knowledge of HIV and AIDS among young Deaf people

young people, 42 per cent of new infections are from young people. One wonders how can this be when so much information has been provided and so much money has been spent on HIV prevention in Zimbabwe and ICASA came and went and observations, research findings and medical break-throughs in research were shared at ICASA.

While we have made progress as a country, it was a shock for me to hear that among the the world? This is a sad but true reality. Have you ever wondered what Deaf people know about HIV and AIDS? Deaf Zimbabwe Trust conducted sexual and reproductive health peer education training for Deaf teenagers and young people aged between 15 and 23 years old.

When asked about how HIV is transmitted the responses from the young people revealed lack of knowledge. The majority said that HIV is spread through; mosquito bites, deep kissing, vomiting, these were the responses that came from the majority of young people. Sex did not feature as a way of transmitting HIV.

Deaf young people did not know about sex as well as mother to child transmission of HIV. The lack of knowledge on transmission of HIV is taking place within a group of people that have already start-ed to indulge in sexual activity. When asked about the age one is ready to have sex, the Deaf young people stated that 15 to 18 years was a good age to start sexual activity.

Asked if they knew the consequences of unprotected sex, most of the young people trained did not know about sexually transmitted infections. As a country, as long as we have these knowledge gaps among young people will we achieve our targets of prevention as a country. The HIV and AIDS aware-ness campaigns we have done as a country have left the Deaf youths and as long as they are not included we will not meet our targets as a country.

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Other topics covered in this bulletin are:

  • World Aids Day and the Deaf Community.
  • 16 Days of Activism and the Deaf Community.
  • Sign Language and Deaf Role models