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Deaf Entrepreneurs: We're Here to Help!

Hello everyone and thank you for tuning into my new blog – DeafAbility. We had a fantastic event on 24th September celebrating International Week of the Deaf. The event was at @Leman Locke Hotel in East London and as you can see plenty of people turned up and enjoyed drinks, food and some presentations. Gary Gumbleton from Capital Content gave a fascinating presentation about producing quality video content using your phone. I introduced myself to the Deaf Community here in London, not that I don’t know many of you but I wanted to talk about @DeafAbility and the difficulties I have faced since moving from Leicester to Essex and moving from employed to self-employed.

My great passion in life is, Fashion. I am a qualified Fashion Designer and Pattern Cutter. I moved from Ireland to attend University here in England, because the support for Deaf and Disabled people is far greater than in Ireland. I studied hard, gained my degree and started working in Harlow then Colchester and after a few years moved to Leicester where I was employed for 2 years. I recently moved back to Essex and started my freelance career as fashion designer but I must tell you it’s been incredibly difficult!

I have sent out hundreds of applications for freelance or part time roles and had absolutely no responses! I have signed up to fashion agencies that specialise in these jobs and they offer no help. Obviously, I have informed them I am deaf but have full Access to Work budget in place to assist me in any role. I think as soon as they hear I’m deaf then my CV goes to the bottom of the pile… I have the qualifications, I have experience but still I can’t even get an interview. It is causing me great stress and I’m also looking for a new home to live, which is also causing me stress. Why is life so difficult?

It doesn’t have to be… If people appreciate that the deaf community have skills, experience, passion and having a deaf person working for you will not ruin your Business! We only require a little understanding and we can be even more productive than hearing people. For companies that employ deaf people often find they work very hard and are not easily distracted like hearing people can be. Those companies usually employ more deaf people.

I feel like Society has improved its awareness to deaf and disabled communities and there are a few more opportunities but not enough!

"I feel like discrimination is still here and in operation but its hidden now" #TheBarriersWeFace

"So, no one will say; We can’t give you a job because you are deaf. They would simply ignore your application" #DeafTalent

I won’t let these barriers stop me achieving my dreams and being successful in my chosen career. I want to let everyone know, if you are struggling, finding barriers in every direction you try. You are not alone!

I won’t stop and shouldn’t either. Keep fighting, keep your motivation and get the right support and you can succeed. We can all succeed! Stay Strong.

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