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Project information

Helping those who suffer in silence

DeafHope and Young DeafHope - first ever domestic abuse support service accessible to Deaf people

This is a three year project, which is ongoing

Charity information: SignHealth

SignHealth logo
  • Need


    Too often Deaf people are suffering terrible abuse in their own homes, yet are unable to get help because so few professionals can use their language - British Sign Language. Deaf women are twice as likely as hearing women to suffer abuse. They are also less likely to report abuse and access help. many Deaf people have gaps in their general knowledge because they miss out on information on TV, radio, by word of mouth or in newspapers. They may be unaware of what constitutes abuse.


    The DeafHope and Young DeafHope projects, piloted in London and southern England will empower Deaf domestic abuse victims to regain control of their lives. We hope to eventually expand both projects to cover the whole country.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Advocacy and counselling


    » SignHealth employs trained BSL-fluent advocates who will be able to support Deaf victims of domestic abuse to make informed decisions.
    » We also have several counsellors who offer therapy in BSL. They will receive training to enable them to further support Deaf abuse victims.

    What success will look like

    See achievements.

    Aim 2

    The creation of a Survivors' Network for DeafHope and Young DeafHope


    » Where Deaf women will be able to confidentially discuss their experiences with others who share their language and culture.

    What success will look like

    See achievements.

    Aim 3

    Raising awareness


    » Information about domestic abuse will be available in BSL video clip format on the DeafHope website.

    What success will look like

    See achievements.

    Aim 4

    Provision of equipment


    » We will buy door wedges, flashing/vibrating alarms to loan to Deaf women and girls seeking to make their homes more secure.

    What success will look like

    See achievements.

    Aim 5

    Workshops for Young DeafHope


    » Sessions to promote safety, to prevent young Deaf people copying abusive behaviour and to empower girls to make better relationship choices.

    What success will look like

    See achievements.

  • Impact


    Over the course of the pilot projects, DeafHope and Young DeafHope aim to directly help around 135 victims of domestic abuse and 200 of their children. Thousands more will benefit from using the website. DeafHope will also increase awareness amongst professionals dealing with domestic abuse issues within the Deaf community.




    We are always happy to report back to donor organisations on the progress of our projects.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £250,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £250,000 DeafHope DeafHope

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Paul Hamlyn Foundation £180,000 Guaranteed
    Henry Smith Charity £90,000 Guaranteed
    other Trusts and Foundations £13,550 Guaranteed
  • Background


    London and southern England pilot projects.


    Deaf victims of domestic abuse.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    As the national charity for Deaf people, our concern is for the physical and mental well-being of this minority group. SignHealth's programme includes improving Deaf people's access to appropriate health services and information through: service improvement, service provision, research and communication. Therefore, SignHealth and its staff are ideally placed within Deaf communities to undertake a project of this kind.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    DeafHope Staff

    All our staff are experienced; either fluent BSL users or Deaf themselves.

'he hurts my Mum and us and i feel sad. i hate him and i don't want to see him again'

Posted by a young boy on Women's Aid 'Kidspeak' online message board