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Resources for the Deaf

Some people are born hard of hearing or deaf, while others develop this disability later in life due to an injury or trauma. Deafness knows no bias and can occur in all demographic. Understanding this life changing disability is important when dealing with community members, family and friends who may be affected by hearing loss. Regardless of who is experiencing this disability and how the disability occurred, it is extremely helpful to have a list of resources on hand. This article provides you with a list of deaf resources from American Sign Language to medical and health resources.

ASL and Fingerspelling

American Sign Language was at one point referred to as Ameslan. This type of sign language is the one that is used the most among deaf Americans. This includes those who reside in some regions of Mexico, English-speaking parts of Canada and the United States. There are many resources available that provide you with the information you need to learn about this language.

  • Fingerspelling: Learn about fingerspelling to become an interpreter with this website. This site features 21 pages of instructions for how to learn OOK, IRE, EW, OR, IR and AR patterns.
  • Sign Writing Site: Find a wide variety of information on sign language on this site. From a symbol manual to software programs, you can easily learn sign language from the tools on this site.
  • Cosmetology Signs: This interactive webpage provides you with instructions on the signs used for the basic cosmetology terms.
  • ASL University: This website provides you with a series of online lessons in American Sign Language, each of which allows you to go at your own pa[ce when learning.
  • ASL Video Dictionary: This page provides you with details about what you can expect to find when you download this dictionary.
  • ASL Access: This comprehensive website provides you with ASL information and access to ASL stories and lessons no matter how old you are, or at what stage you are in the learning process.  

Bookstores and Publishers for the Deaf

It may be frustrating when searching for a book, DVD or software program that is developed specifically for the deaf community. There are specific publishers and bookstores that are geared towards provide the deaf community, with the books and products needed to make life easier. These types of retailers also provide books for deaf studies, to help learners become more familiar with the deaf community.

  • BuTo: BuTo is a publisher that focuses on publishing books for children that emphasize deaf culture and history. This publishing company published its first book in 2003.
  • Butte Publications, Inc.: Butte Publications specializes in books for the deaf and hard of hearing, as well as books for special education, English as a Second Language and early intervention and early childhood.
  • Deaf Internet Bookstore: This publisher operates directly through Amazon to offer a selection of new, nearly new and used books related to deaf issues.
  • Deaf Life: This publisher offers five deaf-related books that are still in print. You can choose to purchase these books directly from the website or at one of the two publishers.
  • Harris Communications: This retailer offers a variety of products that are designed specifically for the deaf and the hard of hearing. Some of the products range from books and multimedia to kids products and alarm clocks.
  • Let's Sign, LLC: This publisher provides you with information and products on ministry sign language instruction and topics.
  • Dawn Sign Press: Dawn Sign Press is a publisher that focuses on providing you with quality American Sign Language materials. You will find products on ASL instruction, interpreting, children, deaf studies and professional resources.
  • Gallaudet University Press: This publisher provides you with the option to purchase a wide range of book subjects, some of which include ASL, sociolinguistics, deaf studies, deaf history and deaf culture.

Conferences, Discussion Groups and Workshops

Conferences, discussion groups and workshops are put together as an effort to encourage the deaf community to come together. When there are discussion groups, it makes it a more comfortable environment for the deaf and hard of hearing to become involved with others in their same position. Whether one is born hard of hearing, deaf, or have recently experienced hearing loss due to an injury, there are resources available to provide guidance and support.

  • Upcoming Conferences and Exhibits: This webpage is constantly updated to ensure that you have the latest information on conferences and education programs related deaf culture. This page is presented by the Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center at Gallaudet University.
  • Conferences: This page provides you with a list of past and upcoming conferences that have been put together on a regular basis since 2002 for every two years.
  • DeafNotes: This website is an online community forum for the deaf community to gather and discuss controversial issues and interesting topics.  
  • 2012 National Deaf Christian Workshop: This webpage provides you with information on the next upcoming workshop.
  • Events: This page provides you with a collection of regular events that are put together and organized by the National Association of the Deaf.
  • Deaf Initiative in Technology: Read about the series of workshops that are put together annually by the National Technical Institute for the Deaf.  
  • Upcoming Events and Workshops: Stay up to date with the latest and upcoming events as provided by the Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness, Inc.
  • Deaf Dating: This website is an online dating site designed specifically for deaf singles and friends.  

Deaf Entertainment

Some may believe that the deaf community cannot fully enjoy theatrics and other forms of entertainment, but this is far from true. There are theater groups across the nation that provide entertainment for the hearing impaired; there are also deaf comedians.

  • Abababa Road Tour: This is a tour that consists of a performance to take the audience through a wide variety of emotions that one experiences while growing up in a deaf family.
  • ASL Shakespeare Project: This page demonstrates the project of translating Shakespeare’s language into American Sign Language, or ASL.
  • Six Characters: This is a group of actors that put together a collection of acts of physical comedy.
  • Pinky the Juggler: This is the official webpage of Pinky, the first professional female deaf juggler. This site provides you with information on upcoming events, workshops, the experience, biography and booking information.
  • NTID Performing Arts: This is the official website for Rochester Institute of Technology’s National Technical Institute for the Deaf’s Performing Arts department. Find upcoming performances and information on past productions.
  • National Theatre of the Deaf: The goal behind this theater is to provide those in the deaf community with theatrical experiences that blend spoken word with American Sign Language.
  • DeafPlanet: This is an interactive website dedicated towards the youth deaf community and provides you with shows, games science and media options. You can also choose to enable fingerspelling within the website for the full experience.
  • Deaf TV: This website provides you with a collection of shows, films and channels that are geared towards the deaf community.  

Medical and Health Resources

Medical and health resources are available for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community. These resources are helpful if you need to locate a deaf-friendly medical professional. There are also resources available that provide information needed to become a healthcare provider as a deaf person.

  • Association of Medical Professionals with Hearing Losses: This organization was designed to provide those in the deaf community with information and mentorship for working in the healthcare field.
  • Deaf Doc: This site provides you with free and reliable health information that is geared towards the deaf and hard-of-hearing community.
  • Deaf MD: This website provides you with information on gaining health education in American Sign Language. You can find deaf-friendly doctors in your area and can also location information on diseases and illnesses on this deaf-friendly site.
  • Deaf Roots and Wings: Learn and practice yoga through this company. You also have the choice of learning reiki.
  • Deaf Yoga Foundation: This is a non-profit organization that is based completely off of volunteers in the deaf and yoga community. This company was founded in 2007, and provides you with three different program options: online education program; training courses and curriculums; and community outreach and network.
  • Exceptional Nurse: This website is dedicated towards providing those with disabilities with resources to help them enter the field of nursing.
  • National Center for Deaf Health Research: This research center is geared towards providing necessary health information through research methods for the deaf community.
  • National Association of School Nurses for the Deaf: This association was put together as a way to enhance the quality of health services and education to deaf students through effective means of communication.  

The original deaflinx.com site was written and authored by Amy Frasu. Deaf Linx is now run by Ericka Wiggins. Here are the Facebook and Twitter pages for Deaf Linx.