If you are looking for a useful way to spend your time during the lockdown period, a 15-year-old from Birmingham has created a series of video tutorials to help people learn British Sign Language (BSL).
Tyrese Dibba, who has Charge Syndrome, and is deaf and partially sighted, released the videos in conjunction with Sense, a charity for everyone living with complex disabilities, in a bid to tackle isolation within the deaf community
More than 7,000 people have already signed up for the free classes available at the Sense website, where the course will be delivered in a series of videos broadcast over five days.
The Birmingham student explains “I’d love it if more people knew BSL, and while we’re all indoors, it’s the perfect time to bring your household together and learn something new.”
“I want more people to learn to sign, so deaf people don’t get excluded. You should be able to chat to someone, whatever their disability might be. After all, no one likes feeling left out.”
“Sense want more people to learn to sign, so when they asked me to teach the lessons, I was very happy. The lessons are free, and they cover some of my favourite subjects, including food and holidays.”
Vicky Dibba, who is Tyrese’s mother, is incredibly supportive of her son’s campaign: “I’m very proud of how Tyrese just got on with filming, not hiding any of his personality. Tyrese is proud to be deaf and feels more people should treat everybody equally and I’m happy to support him.”
Richard Kramer, chief executive of Sense, said: “BSL is the first language for hundreds of thousands of people who are deaf, and if more people are able to use it we can ensure that less people are left out, helping to tackle loneliness and social isolation amongst disabled people. It’s really fun to learn and an ideal time to learn, with so many of us stuck at home looking for new things to do.”
Sign up for the lessons at sense.org.uk.