Deaf teenagers from 10 different countries have just spent a week at St John’s School for the Deaf in Boston Spa to share the similarities and differences of their cultures and build relationships with peers from overseas who share the same communication challenges.
This is the second year that national charity, The Ear Foundation, which helps young deaf people make the most of the latest hearing technology, has organised International Friendship Week. The event is sponsored by the European Association of Cochlear Implant Users (EURO-CIU).
The 35 deaf young people came from England, Wales, Scotland, New Zealand, Nigeria, Finland, Austria, Germany and Norway and The Netherlands. The week was developed to give the young deaf people the chance to meet and make new friends, helped by leaders with a wealth of experience in the area of deafness, from speech and language therapists to audiologists to teachers of the deaf and learning support assistants. All the youngsters were given a change to learn and excel at new challenges, gain knowledge and acquire new skills from a variety of exciting activities and trips.
Lorna Lord, Family Co-ordinator at The Ear Foundation said: “It was amazing to see all the teenagers with different personalities, languages and communication needs naturally work out for themselves the best way of communicating, whether this was talking, texting, signing or smiling.”