A deaf brother walks into the Mosque and begins his ablutions incorrectly. A few elderly men mock his mistakes. Fortunately, a brother who is able to sign is present, and helps the deaf brother perform his wudhu correctly.
Recalling the above incident, Sarah says, “For me, that was disgusting. These were adult mosque elders violating the Prophetic example in the mosque itself by mocking someone instead of teaching or helping them.”
Sarah has been working with the deaf community for the last ten years. Previously, whilst working for a mainstream deaf organisation, she realised that over 95% of its users were Muslim, who were suffering from an acute lack of provision of deaf-friendly Islamic education. This led her to starting her own classes for deaf girls and she is now preparing a tailored modular Islamic Studies course.
The need for such a service is certainly there. Thirteen year old Basma is adamant, “My faith is important to me. I am a Muslim and just because I am deaf it does not give me an excuse not to practice Islam.”