Active Deaf Programs

What is Active Deaf Kids?

Active Deaf Kids is a sport initiative that was established in 2011. Delivered by Deaf Sports Australia, this program includes working with deaf and hard of hearing children in all sports. Schools across Australia apply for Active Deaf Kids Program through the Sporting School online application.

The program is aimed at increasing awareness of the health and social benefits of participating in sport to deaf and hard of hearing children. Deaf Sports Australia’s mission is to facilitate and support the participation of these children through all levels of sports. Key objectives of this program range from educating the mainstream sporting structure, keeping it ‘deaf-friendly’ to fostering and encouraging participation and skill development.


In 2011, Deaf Sports Australia successfully delivered its ‘Active Deaf Kids’ School Education Program across 36 schools and 400 students as part of their pilot program funded by the Australian Sports Commission.

The pilot program of the ‘Active Deaf Kids’ project in 2011 also demonstrated that demand clearly exists to develop and expand the program in 2012 and beyond. The program provides training and resources to teachers and students using deaf-friendly techniques in any sports of interests and is available for both primary and secondary schools. Training includes sport activities for the participants facilitated by our team and supported by skilled sports trainers. Since then, over 4,000 deaf and hard of hearing students have been involved in the program across Australia.

Deaf Sports Australia is grateful for the initial support provided by Sport Australia. This continues through working with national sport organisations who are partners in the Sporting Schools Program for the ongoing  facilitation of this exciting program.

What is Active Deaf Sports Club?

The Active Deaf Sports Club is another sport initiative delivered by Deaf Sports Australia. The aim is to provide mainstream sports organisations the opportunity to integrate inclusion practises for their deaf and hard of hearing sports participants.

The ADSC Program gives coaches, sports administrators and parents the opportunity to learn best communication practices when working with deaf and hard of hearing people in sports settings.

The workshop in the program includes some of the following topics but can be modified to suit specific groups:

  • Culture and identities
  • Deaf sport history
  • Pathways
  • Communications
  • Sport modifications
  • And basic Auslan lesson catered to your sport

The workshop runs for up to 3 hours and can be hosted at your clubroom or office.

What is Active Deaf High-Performance?

The Active Deaf High-Performance program includes pathways where deaf and hard of hearing individuals are identified, recruited and offered further training opportunities through other programs or events, because of potential talent. Deaf Sport Australia will assist these individuals to be given opportunities to further develop their skills in their sport of choice in order to become elite participants.

While our Active Deaf Kids program is the main feeder of potential athletes, there are deaf or heard of hearing athletes that are also recruited from deaf or mainstream competitions. This means that any athlete who aspires to be an elite participant will have further opportunities.

Deaf Sport Australia has good links with national and state sport organisations and strive to ensure that they include talented deaf and hard of hearing sports people in their high performance programs.

The diagram below demonstrates the pathway opportunities that are on offer: