How it started…

About Foyle Deaf Association

The Foyle Deaf Association was established in 2009 to serve and empower the d/Deaf community of the North-West. We are well established in the Deaf community of the North West, with strong ties to our members.

One of the FDA’s vital functions is bringing members together to reduce social isolation and improve skills and confidence. We host weekly social evenings at our centre where members and guests meet and enjoy various leisure activities such as bingo, pool, darts, chess and so on.

We also run outings, events and various projects where our d/Deaf members and higher level sign language students meet up, such as coffee mornings, sign choir, arts and crafts and knitting projects, as well as advocacy, talks and information sessions with speakers of interest to the d/Deaf community.

We have recently established a youth club for d/Deaf children and CODAs and run music and art projects with them. By providing a hub where our d/Deaf members can associate with their peers, the FDA is one of the structures that helps create a sense of community among d/Deaf individuals who are often geographically dispersed.

Simply bringing d/Deaf people together is part of the community-creating process, which is enhanced by different projects and services provided by the FDA. In addition, our ongoing work in training successive cohorts in signed languages addresses the lack of hearing sign language professionals, including communication support workers and interpreters in Northern Ireland.

Our Team

Operating in the North West, our committee is made up of both BSL and ISL users, d/Deaf and hearing individuals. One of the few Deaf-led organisations in Northern Ireland, the Foyle Deaf Association is supported by a fantastic team of committed volunteers.

Our History

Founded in 2009, the Foyle Deaf Association has been operating continually for the past 15 years. Set up as a social and sign language organisation, we are proud to deliver quality services and projects to our d/Deaf and hearing members.

Our Mission

Our mission is to serve the d/Deaf community of the North West and beyond. Our services, which facilitate social activities, training, information, and advocacy, are vital to our local community. With members from across Northern Ireland and the Republic, we work together closely to ensure that we remain relevant and accessible to the community we serve.