Enhancing Mental Health of the Deaf Community

in Hong Kong

無聲世界:聾人精神健康計劃

Prof. Winnie Mak

麥穎思教授

The Issue 議題

 

With an “invisible disability”, the Deaf often receives less empathy from others. On top of feelings of rejection from stigma against sign language and their condition, they struggle with significantly more mental health issues than the hearing, such as depression and anxiety disorders. They have lower self-esteem, often encountering difficulties in developing problem-solving skills and forming peer relationships.

Worse still, many Deaf individuals, especially those who sign, are reluctant to seek mental health services when in distress, due to a lack of professionals who understand both sign language and Deaf culture.

有研究指出,比起健聽人士,聾人明顯更易有精神困擾。聾人面對更多精神健康挑戰,自尊感較低,在發展解難能力和交際等都有程度不一的困難。

本地亦有研究指出,聾人(尤其是使用手語的聾人)面對情緒困擾,往往不太願意尋求專業協助,主要原因是香港缺少懂手語和明白聾人文化的相關專業人士。

The Solution 解決方案

 

The team sets off to survey the mental health literacy of Deaf signers and identify their areas of misconceptions. They then build a first-of-its-kind Hong Kong Sign Language-Chinese bilingual platform covering topics on common disorders, well-being and stress management etc., in addition to quick mental health assessments and suggested follow-up actions.

The team also organises three sets of workshops co-led by Deaf individuals:

  1. Mental health basics for Deaf signers, their families and friends;

  2. Deaf storyteller training sessions for Deaf participants to learn telling stories about their identity, who will then share on a Deaf Library Day as a means of empowerment ; and

  3. Deaf awareness raising for mental health professionals to learn basic signs and understand the Deaf culture, with sharing from Deaf signers on their mental health service experiences.

團隊期望透過資料庫和工作坊,讓聾人對精神健康更深入理解,同時加深有關專業人士對聾人精神健康需要的認識。

項目包括五步曲:

  1. 團隊首先進行精神健康知識普查,了解聾人對精神健康資訊的認知;

  2. 建立一個具備手語雙語的心理健康資料庫,講解精神健康概念,以及為聾人提供簡短網上心理健康評估;

  3. 為聾人和公眾人士提供一系列精神健康工作坊;

  4. 為聾人提供説書人培訓,透過六節訓練,提升聾人的身份認同感及精神健康;

  5. 針對從事精神健康工作的專業人士,提供聾意識工作坊,給予基本手語教學、聾人文化介紹及分享。

Beneficiaries 受惠對象

 

  • 1,000 Deaf signers
    1,000名香港聾人

  • 2,000 family members of Deaf signers
    2,000名聾人家庭成員

  • 2,000 friends, teachers and professionals serving Deaf clients (e.g. counsellors, social workers, psychologists)
    2,000名公眾:聾人的健聽朋友、聾校教師、需要服務聾人的相關專業人士(例如輔導員、社工、心理學家等)

  • 60 sign language interpreters
    60名手語傳譯員

  • Other databank users and workshop participants
    其他用戶:手語傳譯課程學生、有興趣學習手語的公眾、工作坊參加者

Social Impact 社會效益

 

The team targets to set a foundation to support both the Deaf community in accessing mental health information, and mental health professionals in better understanding their Deaf clients. The combination of online databank and workshops can improve mental health literacy of Deaf signers that they understand their statuses better and know what to do to improve their mental well-being; help mental health personnel learn basic Hong Kong Sign Language and enhance their awareness towards the Deaf’s mental health needs; and improve communication between mental health personnel and Deaf clients.

In the long run, well-being for minority groups would be promoted while the scope of mental health services in the community could be widened.

 

建立資料庫及舉辦工作坊,旨在達到四方面成果:

  1. 提高聾人對心理健康的認識;

  2. 讓聾人更了解自己的精神狀況,掌握提升精神健康的方法;

  3. 促進聾人與有關專業人士有效溝通;

  4. 提升專業人士對聾人精神健康需要的意識。

長遠而言,團隊計劃向小眾推廣精神健康,亦讓更多社群受惠於本港精神健康服務。

Links了解更多

 

SoCUBE 中大社創

Project Team 項目團隊

 

PROF. FELIX SZE
DEPARTMENT OF LINGUISTICS AND MODERN LANGUAGES, FACULTY OF ARTS

施婉萍教授
中大文學院語言學及現代語言系

PROF. WINNIE MAK
DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHOLOGY, FACULTY OF SOCIAL SCIENCE

麥穎思教授
中大社會科學院心理學系

Supported by資助計畫

 

Knowledge Transfer Fund 2019/20

知識轉移項目基金 2019/20