USAID Advances Sign Language Interpreters’ Skills in Turkmenistan

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Organizations across all sectors of Turkmenistan need sign language interpreters to communicate effectively with hearing-impaired citizens.

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, July 20, 2022

July 19, 2022 Ashgabat, Turkmenistan – The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is working on making society more accessible and comfortable for people with hearing difficulties living in Turkmenistan.

Today, USAID’s Governance Support Program, in partnership with the Blind and Deaf Society of Turkmenistan and with support from the Embassy of Malaysia in Turkmenistan, concluded a month-long educational program, designed to improve the skills of sign language interpreters from across Turkmenistan.  The training course, held by national and international experts, will support the government of Turkmenistan’s accessibility and inclusivity goals for those with hearing impairments.  The course, which consisted of 271 class hours, trained 12 interpreters.

Organizations across all sectors of Turkmenistan need sign language interpreters to communicate effectively with hearing-impaired citizens.  In her opening remarks, USAID Country Representative to Turkmenistan Nino Nadiradze noted: “Professional sign language interpreters provide much-needed inclusivity for people with hearing difficulties, making society more accessible and lives more comfortable for them.  It gives me great pleasure to share new or improved educational resources for interpreters that bring this service in Turkmenistan to a world-class level.”

Echoing the USAID country representative, Chargé d’Affaires of the Embassy of Malaysia in Turkmenistan Khairul Hezry Arifin expressed his hope that this program would further open the doors of opportunity for society.  He also extended his gratitude to USAID and the Blind and Deaf Society of Turkmenistan for the opportunity to support this program.

Additional training sessions will be held until July 30 and they aim to prepare a pool of highly-skilled interpreters to staff a new “Dispatching Service of Sign Language Interpretation” initiative in Turkmenistan.  With initial support from USAID, the Blind and Deaf Society will establish and run this service to provide on-call communication services for hearing-impaired people.  This is another example of USAID’s successful cooperation with the government of Turkmenistan, local civil society organizations and other diplomatic missions to build an inclusive society with a variety of services available to accommodate the needs of vulnerable groups.

The USAID-funded Governance Support Program, implemented by the QED Group LLC, in partnership with the government of Turkmenistan, aims to strengthen accountability, effectiveness, and transparency of governance in the country.

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USAID is the world’s premier international development agency and a catalytic actor driving development results. For more information, please visit: https://www.usaid.gov/central-asia-regional.

Last updated: September 27, 2022

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