The Bible for the Deaf



To make Bibles accessible for the Deaf by
     i) making the Bible available in deaf-orientated English in South Africa and Africa for the Deaf who use the Bible in English and
     ii) supporting a visual Bible in South African Sign Language.


  • For most deaf people, the Bible is a closed book they cannot understand.
  • Many schools for the Deaf in South Africa and Africa use English as the medium of instruction. Since people learn spoken language primarily through imitation and verbal communication, people who are born deaf have specific language and reading needs.
  • The English Bible for the Deaf was translated in such a way that most deaf people who receive their instruction in English would understand it.

       - a limited vocabulary
       - many footnotes and illustrations

  • The manuscript was finalised and handed over to the Bible Society in 2018 and is currently being prepared for print. We envisage that this translation will be launched by the end of 2019.
  • The translation of the Deuterocanonical books of the Bible is underway.
  • For most deaf people, Sign Language is their mother tongue and they would no doubt prefer a visual Bible in the Sign Language they understand.
  • The organisation, Hands with Words, is undertaking a Bible translation in South African Sign Language. There are approximately 600 000 deaf people in South Africa who use this language.
  • The Bible Society financially supports this project and further co-operation with Hands with Words is being discussed.


Expected impact
  • The English Bible for the Deaf and the visual Bible translation in South African Sign Language will make the Word of God much more accessible for the Deaf in our country.


How can you help?

R201 000 is needed to finalise the translation of the English Bible for the Deaf.
R500 000 is needed to support the South African Sign Language Bible translation project.

Make a difference. Be a sower of hope.


Bank: ABSA
Account number: 260 208 950
Branch Code: 632-005

* Please use reference code: 1400


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