The DESIGNS Project – 2017-2019

We wasted no time in the new year and launched our brand new education and training project called DESIGNS.

The DESIGNS project brings together partners from 4 EU countries who are renowned experts in the fields of Employment, Education and Training, Sign Language Interpreting and Training, and Deaf community advocacy. The overall aim of the project is to create VET and CPD training resources and exchange best practices across Europe to facilitate greater participation of Deaf sign language users in employment.

Our expert partners include:

  • Interesource Group (Ireland) Limited
  • European Forum of Sign Language Interpreters (efsli)
  • European Union of the Deaf (EUD)
  • University of Humbolt of Berlin
  • The Centre for Deaf Studies (CDS), Trinity College Dublin
  • Association for Higher Education Access and Disability (AHEAD), and
  • Centre for Translation & Interpreting Studies in Scotland (CTISS), Heriot-Watt University.

The meeting of the international partners took place in Deaf Village Ireland in January, followed by the first in a series of Town Hall sessions, which was streamed and watched live by 8,000 viewers and with an additional 11,000 viewers watching the session after the event on Facebook. The event – with 11 speakers, generated much international interest from around the globe, and the session ended with an exciting questions and answers session moderated by the Irish Deaf Society’s chairman, Eddie Redmond.

Over the next 24 months some of the other results we now look forward to launching are a series of handbooks for the employers in all partner countries, a comprehensive online course, masterclasses for interpreters and the deaf community and a research documentary which features experiences of Deaf job seekers, policy makers and employers. efsli has been working on developing a template of a portfolio of competencies which SLIs can use to record their continuous professional development (CPD) activities, and we look forward to sharing this with you in the very near future. The Irish team will be on a diplomatic mission in May and will be sharing the DESIGNS vision and meeting consular officials of the Balkan states in Belgrade.

As the project progresses, do check in with our team and as always – if you would like to get involved in any shape or form – drop us an email

Don’t forget to follow us on twitter @designsproject and do visit the website www.designsproject.eu


JUSTISIGNS project comes to a close.


It is difficult to believe that some thirty months ago our expert project team met to consider just how JUSTISIGNS would shape up and whether and what we do as a consortium could make a difference to the society in which we live and the communities that we serve.

We have achieved so much in a relatively short period and there is much to be proud of.  JUSTISIGNS has laid a solid foundation for the development of professional skills of sign language interpreters working in legal settings and achieved commendable results, which we recently presented alongside distinguished partners and panelists at the European Parliament on 27th April 2016. Engagement with our stakeholders has been wide, and profound. Contributions from the Deaf community, the interpreting professionals, the police forces and legal professionals from each partner countries has been significant. JUSTISIGNS has grown its own legs and we are confident that the resources that we have collectively produced will bring many benefits well beyond the life-cycle of the project and for many years to come.  JUSTISIGNS represents a further step forward. Our academic partners created cutting-edge and innovative content. efsli and EULITA have engaged in extensive dissemination of information through their networks and social media channels. We also pay tribute to all the professionals who have been involved in developing the various project outputs. Expertise, professional knowledge and invaluable human resources have been the key to the success of JUSTISIGNS. We are grateful for every contribution – whether it was tweeting our results, participating at training events or providing us guidance and support.

I would also like to acknowledge our partners and the teams from:

  • Interesource Group (Ireland) Limited
  • KU Leuven (Faculty of Arts, Campus Antwerp)
  • EULITA, the European Legal Interpreters and Translators Association
  • The Centre for Deaf Studies (CDS), Trinity College Dublin
  • The University of Applied Sciences for Special Needs Education (HfH, Switzerland)
  • Centre for Translation & Interpreting Studies in Scotland (CTISS), Heriot-Watt University

The commitment and capability of the project’s partners have contributed to JUSTISIGNS’ remarkable results. JUSTISIGNS has evolved through a series of events, seminars, workshops and evidence-based research which has guided the development of the training resources. In addition, we are continuing to work with our stakeholders to provide advice and training, we are planning to roll out the JUSTISIGNS course to new territories and we are achieving success in securing presentations at conferences throughout 2016 and 2017.

Some of the other results we now look forward to launching are a series of handbooks for the police forces in all partner countries, a comprehensive online course for legal professionals, interpreters and the deaf community and a research documentary which features experiences of legal professionals, policy makers, educators and the Deaf community. efsli has been working on developing a template of a portfolio of competencies which SLIs can use to record their continuous professional development (CPD) activities, and we look forward to sharing this with you in the very near future.

We hope you will enjoy this short video and find it inspiring with new food for thought for future achievements and ongoing collaboration with us.

Don’t forget to follow us on twitter @JUSTISIGNS and do visit the website http://www.justisigns.com


JUSTISIGNS – Interpreters working with victims of sexual abuse – Masterclass with the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre

Interpreters working with victims of sexual abuse – masterclass with the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre

Interesource Group (Ireland) Limited and the Centre for Deaf Studies, Trinity College Dublin are delighted to be collaborating with the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre who will host this 2-day training session as part of the JUSTISIGNS project masterclass series. The Dublin Rape Crisis Centre has since 1979 offered a wide range of services to women and men who are affected by rape, sexual assault, sexual harassment or childhood sexual abuse. The Education and Training Department of DRCC provides training programmes for professionals and volunteers who provide support or services to victims of sexual violence.

This training programme is designed to prepare deaf and hearing interpreters to work with victims of sexual violence including in their interaction with the legal process. It provides an opportunity to consider the beliefs that exist in society in relation to sexual violence and how they are internalised by and impact upon the victim. Participants will learn about the impact of childhood abuse and of rape and sexual assault. The legal process and its impact on the victim who reports is explored, and issues which arise for the interpreter. The principles and ethics of interpreting are considered in relation to working within this context. Some guidelines are provided regarding interpreting in a counselling situation.

The training approach is participative and experiential. Methods used include group discussion, lecture, case studies, videos, and experiential exercises. The training approach is invitational, with the sensitive nature of the issues being covered and the fact that they may resonate for participants acknowledged. Participation is encouraged but without pressure. There is a strong focus on the impact on the interpreter of working with these issues, the potential for vicarious traumatisation, and strategies the interpreter can employ for self care.

The training programme will be delivered by Leonie O’Dowd, Head of Education and Training and Jane Baird, Education Executive of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre Education and Training Department.  DRCC develops and delivers tailored training programmes for those providing services and supports to people who have experienced childhood sexual abuse and sexual violence.  DRCC has provided training programmes for ISL interpreters in the past, and has published a Handbook for community interpreters ‘Interpreting in Situations of Sexual Violence and other Trauma’.  Leonie has worked with DRCC for 16 years and is an accredited  psychotherapist with specialist training in the treatment of trauma.  Jane has worked with DRCC for 7 years.  She is also an accredited psychotherapist, and has considerable experience of working and training in the area of disability.

To book please visit:  justisignsdrcc.eventbrite.ie  PLACES ARE LIMITED For any queries please contact Haaris on 087 2270311 or email: info@justisigns.com