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International Day of Sign Languages

The 23rd of September every year, marks the celebration of the International Day of Sign Languages. A day that also encourages early access to sign language and other solutions in sign language, such as high-quality education and learning, which are critical to an individual’s growth and development.

History and importance of the day

The date of 23rd September was chosen to celebrate the beginning of an advocacy organisation whose major purpose is to preserve sign languages and deaf culture as prerequisites to the realisation of deaf people’s human rights. In 2018, as part of the International Week of the Deaf, the International Day of Sign Languages was first observed. The inaugural International Week of the Deaf was held in September 1958, and since then it has grown into a global movement of deaf unity and concentrated lobbying to raise awareness of the challenges that deaf people experience in their daily lives.

Theme for this year’s International Day of Sign Languages

The World Federation of the Deaf has declared “We Sign For Human Rights” as the theme for 2021, underlining how each of us can work together to promote the acknowledgment of our right to use sign languages in all aspects of life. Sign language is a type of language that communicates definition through hand motions and body movement.



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