Del Mar Libraries hopes to raise awareness for the deaf and hard of hearing community, as well as spotlight resources to those affected, with a virtual display.

The display, at www.delmar.edu/library/library-displays.html, will be up through Sept. 30 for Deaf Awareness Month. This year’s theme is “human rights through sign language.”

Kathy Westergren, outreach and instruction librarian, said Del Mar has been celebrating Deaf Awareness Month for several years, and it continues to grow each year.

About 600,000 people, or 2.2 in every 1,000, in the United States are hard of hearing. Some were born deaf while others started experiencing difficulties following an illness such as meningitis or listening to loud music for prolonged periods. Some face challenges when family members choose not to learn American Sign Language and instead attempt to communicate through text messages or even their own signs. Learning sign language can help others, especially children who are hard of hearing, to feel more comfortable communicating.

Del Mar offers an American Sign Language and Interpreter course that can be taken to follow a path to becoming an ASL/English instructor, or simply earning a certificate in ASL and deafness studies to help in any field.

For more information on the course, visit www.delmar.edu/degrees/american-sign-language-and-deaf-studies/index.html. 

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