Gambian Association of the Deaf & Hard of Hearing

Female Wing

The Female Wing work for Deaf Women’s rights as part of the Gambia Association of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.

In the late 1990’s a woman’s group was formed that met at the GADHOH office in Banjul. Later in moved to accommodation at London Corner, Serrekunda.

In 2000 the group was formally converted into GADHOH’s Female Wing with its own activities rented centre in Latrikunda Sabiji.

It provides education and training for women.

In 2001 the Female Wing opened a nursery school for pre-school Deaf children, aged 4 -7 years.

The Female Wing was based at Latrikunda Sabiji in a compound and a building that was formerly a school.


On the 18th March 2008 the new head office for the Female wing was officially opened at Kanifing. Mrs. Marieke IJsendoorn, Chairperson of Foundation Bugnala initiated the build on 3rd April 2007.

The building exists of two wings: one for the nursery school with two classrooms, office and store and another one for the skills centre for deaf girls (15 +) with literacy room, workshop for sewing and knitting, a kitchen/cake bakery, an open kitchen (for making local dishes) and an open space for tie and dye and hairdressing. Toilets for children and adults, water and electricity connection, furniture and outside playing materials for the children and a school bus have all been donated.

The first nursery school for deaf children in The Gambia has now been realised. Gambia already has a school for education for deaf children (7-16 years), (grade 1-9), at St. John's school for the Deaf, Kanifing.


This was only possible with the fantastic fund raising effort by the Dutch Foundation Buganala along with donations and \financial support of the Dutch Foundation NCDO (National Committee for International Cooperation and Sustainable Development) and Foundation to Build, of The Netherlands, who carried out the construction employing a group of deaf boys who had  finished their education at St. John's School which was overseen by Mr. Coes Ljsendoorn, the project coordinator.

We are Here - West Coast of Africa - in The Gambia - at Kanifing - near the independance Stadium


Aims and Objectives

The work of the Female Wing is concerned with GADHOH’s objectives which include:

  • We are able to participate fully in family life and are not discriminated against in regards to sexual relationships, marriage and parenthood.
  • We are working for the empowerment of Deaf women.
  • We are working for the education of pre-school Deaf children.
  • Health and hygiene education.
  • Nursery education for pre-school Deaf children from 4 – 7 years of age.

The branch is run by women with its own activities;

  • Tie and Dye
  • Knitting, (crochet)
  • Making soap powder
  • Pre-nursery school for Deaf children
  • Home Economics
  • Hair dressing
  • Bakery project
  • Tailoring
  • Sewing of bed sheets.

Other activities include:

  • Sign language for parents of Deaf children.
  • Literacy and English for Deaf women.
  • Working for the empowerment of Deaf women.
  • Sign language classes for Deaf adults.
  • Health and hygiene education.
  • Outreach and home visiting to the families of trainees and young children.

The Kanifing Centre is also used for sign language classes for Deaf adults.

Once a month it hosts GADHOH’s Deaf Club – an opportunity for members of the Deaf Community to come together to enjoy a meal and a range of social activities.

The Female Wing raises funds to support its activities. This is partly done by selling some of the products made by the trainees which include;

  • Clothes for children and adults
  • Bed covers and cushions
  • Chair backs and table centres
  • Table Mats
  • Soap Powder
  • Hairdressing by trainees.
  • GADHOH Female Wing also sells one of GADHOH's newspapers at the centre.

We have one tailoring class, one bakery class, one nursery class, two salons and one knitting class.

There are about twenty Deaf girls, who learn different skills mentioned above and there are ten Deaf children at the Nursery class.