ACPD – Access to caretaking professions for deaf
While in some countries deaf and hearing-impaired people have successful careers and participate in social life, in other countries, especially in South Eastern Europe, there are hardly any opportunities for their social and professional integration. Employment opportunities are often limited to low-skilled jobs and are therefore financially and substantively unattractive. The range of job opportunities for people with hearing disabilities has not grown significantly across Europe in recent years, and the number of available qualifications, as well as the position of sign language in society, remains far behind the aspirations of deaf and hard of hearing people. Deaf and hard of hearing people still face many hurdles in everyday life. Especially at the time of the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, other habits such as lip-reading are made impossible by the mandatory wearing of masks.
Due to this fact and based on the various experiences of the partnership in the field of inclusion and employment of people with disabilities, six organisations from Germany, Italy, Bulgaria, Romania, Lithuania joined forces and launched the 𝗔𝗖𝗣𝗗 project (𝗔𝗰𝗰𝗲𝘀𝘀 𝘁𝗼 𝗰𝗮𝗿𝗲𝘁𝗮𝗸𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗽𝗿𝗼𝗳𝗲𝘀𝘀𝗶𝗼𝗻𝘀 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝗱𝗲𝗮𝗳), which is concerned with investigating the training opportunities and employability of people with hearing disabilities in caring and nursing professions in order to enable fuller participation in society.
The ACPD project aims to provide deaf and hearing-impaired people with qualifications in the field of care in order to offer hearing-impaired people access to financial resources and social integration, as well as to counteract the shortage of care workers throughout Europe. In addition, the project is guided by the core competences of inclusive teaching identified in a European study: appreciation of learner diversity, support for all learners, collaboration with others and continuous professional development. These are necessary competences that are far from being found in all VET provision. They also reflect the objectives of the Europe 2020 and ET2020 strategies, which identify inclusive education, equity, justice, non-discrimination and the promotion of civic competences as priority areas for European cooperation in education and training.
Bottom-up cooperation between VET providers, colleges, special educational needs associations and deaf organisations/associations were a priority of the project. The project promoted the creation of transnational and transregional educational networks working to improve the social and professional inclusion of people with all types of disabilities. The INTAMT Academy, in cooperation with its partners, conducted an analysis of existing vocational training opportunities in the field of nursing and nursing assistance, an examination of the feasibility of a comprehensive training course for deaf and hard of hearing people, and the development of a set of basic recommendations for such a course. The project partner expressed a strong wish to cooperate in the future beyond the scope of this project in order to develop a training course which, due to clearly described content modules and transparent assessment criteria, can be applied for the assessment of basic qualifications of hearing impaired staff in the field of nursing and care services, regardless of the territorial context, and promote the professional inclusion of this group of people.
The main target groups of the project were:
- Schools, vocational training centres and colleges for nursing and care professions, technical schools and vocational training centres providing education and training for deaf and hard of hearing people
- Vocational training centres for adults and lifelong learning
- Rehabilitation centres
- Associations of the deaf and hard of hearing
- Nursing and elderly care institutions and hospitals as well as affiliated professional and advocacy organisations, training institutes and training certification bodies
Partners of the ACPD project were:
European Centre for Socio-professional Integration ACTA
The Bulgarian Development Agency
Utena University of Applied Sciences
Verband Sonderpaedagogik (Association for special education)
Here you can find more information on the ACPD project.