Deaf Education and Empowerment

Deaf children and young adults in Ethiopia comprise a traditionally marginalized community in one of the 10 poorest countries in the world. They face discrimination in education, health care, job skills training and everyday communication and activities. In partnership with an organization in Ethiopia, volunteers with a special interest in working with this population and their families developed a program involving skills and job training, public education and specialized educational support.

Program Highlights:

This was Nazareth's 5th service-learning program in partnership with Visions Global Empowerment, a Los Angeles-based global nonprofit organization operating education programs in Sri Lanka, India, Ethiopia and Nicaragua. Students, faculty and staff spent time with local Deaf leaders, staff and teachers to learn about the issues that impact the lives of children in Ethiopia.

Student visited local schools and ongoing Visions' projects, as well as training programs conducted for schoolchildren, young adults and parents in the public schools of Addis Ababa and Awassa.

There were also periodic sightseeing trips and leisure activities to fascinating locations in Ethiopia including Millenium Park, a local fishing market at Lake Awassa and to Nechisar National Park in Arba Minch. A visit to view the Konso Cultural Landscape rounded out the program to make this a powerful cross-cultural exchange and learning experience.


    "During the Deaf Education and Empowerment program, I saw how thirsty these students were for language and it was amazing to see their signs develop." — Mary Hamme '14G
    Read more about the student experience in Ethiopia »