Leading on from the Olympics, Deaf Children Australia (DCA) hosted a Combined Secondary Schools Sports Carnival on 15 September for over 140 deaf and hard of hearing students from across Victoria to get together at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre to celebrate and strengthen their own sporting abilities. This was a unique opportunity for these students to come together on a level playing field in terms of their communication to enjoy a wide range of sports.
This annual Sports Carnival is a great way to bring together young people from so many different schools to enjoy sports clinics and competitions run by state sporting organisations and coaching professionals. Sports offer fantastic opportunities for young people to build those critical connections but for children and teenagers who are deaf and hard of hearing, it can be more difficult to feel part of a local team. To participate in sporting and recreational activities, they may need someone to interpret instructions and help them communicate with their teammates.
While it’s being questioned how much money should go to our elite athletes, Deaf Children Australia is pleased that deaf and hard of hearing children will be able to receive Auslan support through the National Disability Insurance Scheme so they can participate in their local sports teams, build those connections with their peers and strengthen their talents. There were so many fantastic talented young sportspeople at the Carnival!
DCA’s Combined Secondary Schools Sports Carnival has been made possible through the support of Badminton Victoria, Netball Victoria, Melbourne Vixens, Deaf Sports Recreation Victoria, Melbourne City Football Club, Table Tennis Victoria, Baseball Victoria, Community Training Initiatives and Melbourne United.