3 March is World Hearing Day, when stakeholders across the globe come together to raise awareness about deafness, hearing loss and to promote ear and hearing care. CAFE joined in this celebration by sharing interviews with deaf Holstein Kiel fan Danny, and the Irish Football Association. 

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), over 466 million people worldwide are deaf or hard of hearing, which represents approximately 6.1% of the world’s population. It is estimated that by 2050 one in four people will be deaf or hard of hearing and that around one-third of people over 65 are affected.

To raise awareness, the WHO organises the annual World Hearing Day and encourages individuals and organisations to come together to discuss and promote preventative measures for effective ear care, as well as communication solutions.

Ahead of this global event, CAFE caught up with Danny, a deaf Holstein Kiel fan who kindly shared with us his experiences of attending live games in a latest edition of the #MyMatchday series.

Here is a short video of Danny introducing himself using sign language:

We also caught up with Thomas Fulton, Head of Stadium Technology and Jason Browning, newly appointed Disability Access Officer, of the Irish Football Association, to discuss the sign language interpretation offering at Windsor Park.

Here is an extract of the Windsor Park sign language interpreter, Trevor McCormick, informing fans within the stadium that there is to be a substitution for Northern Ireland:

Finally, we also shared the short video below across our social media platforms, to demonstrate our support for World Hearing Day as well as provide some guidance around communicating with deaf or hard of hearing fans within a stadium environment:

In addition to the services mentioned via the interviews with Danny and the IFA, the installation of assistive listening devices such as induction loop systems and FM radio transmitters is highly recommended for both new and existing stadiums by UEFA and CAFE.

Download CAFE's Guidance Note on assistive listening devices.

CAFE would like to thank Danny, Thomas and Jason who helped us to mark World Hearing Day, and we encourage clubs or national associations to contact us at [email protected], should they require any additional information regarding sign language interpretation or assistive listening devices. 

Published 04/03/21