Open: Mon – Fri, 8.30am – 4pm
+27 11 717 4239

The Deaf Lesbian & Bisexual Women’s Empowerment Project

History and aims

In 2010, we partnered with The Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice to start a project for Deaf women who identify as lesbian or bisexual in South Africa.

Deaf lesbian and bisexual women in South Africa confront many of the same hardships faced by all Deaf South Africans. But, they also have unique needs and challenges that require targeted interventions. For example, Deaf lesbians, who are already at increased risk of experiencing violence because of their gender and disability, safety concerns can prevent them from coming out, or seeking support services.

The project addresses the challenges faced by Deaf lesbian and bisexual women through the following actions:

  • Promoting individual and joint advocacy by Deaf lesbian and bisexual women in their communities.
  • Documenting and generate knowledge of the lives of Deaf lesbian and bisexual women.
  • Helping educate the public about sexual orientation and disability.
  • Building the capacity of Deaf lesbian and bisexual women to be peer-educators on sexual orientation. gender-based violence and sexual health and rights to other Deaf women.


Photo Voices: Deaf Lesbian and Bisexual women unite to tell their stories

This was one of the first actions undertaken by the group. Communication tools based on reading or listening by the user are largely inaccessible to Deaf people who need information delivered in highly visual formats. But photographs do not necessarily require spoken or written language to communicate their meaning.

Read more, and view the exhibition

Project Coordinator

Nancy Castro-LealNancy Castro-Leal

For enquires about the Deaf Lesbian and Bisexual Women's Empowerment Group, please call 011 717 4239 or contact Nancy