Integration of deaf and hard of hearing persons

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Integration of deaf and hard of hearing persons

Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
$100,000 - $250,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

The website offers a new solution for social problems,such as integration of deaf people that hasn’t been handled before.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address? Nearly 10% of the world's population is hard of hearing and 1-2% is deaf, who have disadvantage in many areas of life compared to healthy persons, for example in education, labour services and access to information. Nearly 5% of Hungary's population is hard of hearing. The deaf people in the Foundation's Board unfortunately experience in their daily lives, that the education of finger spelling in Hungary is not at a high level and disabled persons are treated as handicapped in everyday life and „hearing“ people are unable to communicate with a deaf. The aim of the members of the Foundation is to disseminate widely the finger spelling and to improve IT applications that help the deaf people and others who are interested in this subject. The purpose of the project is the quality development of the finger spelling education, the accessibility for communication, the support of finger spelling education by IT applications. Our goal was to develop an innovative service package (website, dictionary, mobile application) that helps the direct target group’s social integration.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

In order to achieve its goals the members of the foundation developed a webpage (, that functions as an online finger spelling dictionary. This means that the members collected a basic vocabulary of nearly 3.000 words/expressions and they recorded it digitally in a green box studio. The words were grouped and the group were pubblished on the website. So if anybody is interested in a special word he can look for it in the dictionary and he can see its finger spelling. The other result of the project that people can use this online dictionary through their smartphones, too and the application can be used without any geographical barrier. Our activities are planned to be the followings: a) Development of a website and the publication of the expressions in finger spelling. b) Mobile platform development. The development of mobile technology contributes to the possibility of using our content throughout mobile platform. So our contents and services can be reached on our free webpage wherever it is necessary Now there exist 2.500 signs that can be seen on smartphones. The mobile application is developed for symbian, android, and iPhone environment. c) Fingerspell content maintenance and expansion. We are updating fingerspell contents and news in order to keep deaf and hard of hearing people informed. Our plan is to expand the vocabulary by 2.000 words a year. In 2010 we published 48 fingerspell news and 10 crosswords.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Considering the fast development of information technology we are planning to take advantage of the smartphones‘ opportunities so as to support deaf people and their environment. We consider that this project is really a new way of looking the mentioned social proplem because the present system is not flexible enough. Now you can call a finger spelling interpreter and you have to ask for it many days earlier. With our system you can ask for help in real time with internet, or on smartphone. Our solution is totally new in Hungary as on our homepage you can see the video of each signs, you have the possibility to rotate the 'interpreter'. This solution makes it simplier and faster the learning and it is more upto date as it can be used througout phones and from wherever it is needed. The dictionary is developing continuously according to the feedbacks. If any special need arises we tend to satisfy the needs of the target group. We are in constant contact with the users of the webpage and we form the webpage according to the changing needs. We have begun programming the site but is under construction now. It has also EU relations as in the EU they are plan to make the 112 emergency number accessible for everyone.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Similar application was developed in the United States but in Hungary and in Europe this website is unique. The webpage offers a new solution for social problems, such as the integration of deaf people that hasn’t been handled before. People with hard of hearing hasn’t been targeted before with such programs, initiatives. There exists learning possibilities for deaf people but such interactive application has not been developed before. The marketplace will be in the long term the whol EU, as there is also a need in the EU to make steps for hard of hearing people. The REACH112 is a 3-year project partially funded under the ICT Policy Support Programme by the European Community. REACH112 will implement an accessible alternative to traditional voice telephony that will be suitable for all. IT will provide modes of communication so that they will find a way to communicate in each situation, may it be with a live real-time text conversation, with sign language, with lip reading, with voice or with any simultaneous combination of these modes described by the concept of Total Conversation.
About You
Hallatlan Foundation
About You
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About Your Organization
Organization Name

Hallatlan Foundation

Organization Country

, BU

Country where this project is creating social impact

, BU

How long has your organization been operating?

More than 5 years

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Select the stage that best applies to your solution

Growth (your pilot is up and running, and starting to expand)

How long have you been in operation?

Operating for 1‐5 years

Social Impact
FOUNDING STORY: We want to hear about your “Aha!” moment. Share the story of where and when the founder(s) saw this solution’s potential to change the world.

At first I used special finger spelling at school in order to help my classmates at the oral exams. Then I was interested about metacommunication and non-verbal communication as a result of which I enrolled at afinger spelling course in 2004. There were written manuals to learn the signs but I intended to learn from video animations the signs. I searched on the internet but I did not find anything like that. At that time I asked my teacher to sign the sentence "The webpage is coming soon" which I videotaped. I registered the domain "" (it has two different meanings:scandalous, unheard-of) and we registered the videos (signs) step-by-step.

Specify both the depth and scale of your solution’s social impact to date

The 4.056 registrated members (6-66-year-old) can be considered as a result of the project and this number increases 4 members a day. Nearly 1.000 people has participated on our finger spelling courses. The target group of the language courses is the whole society, anybody can participate. The attendance of the webpage is 700 persons and 37.857 persons watched our finger spelling news program.

What is your projected impact within the next 1-5 years? Is your idea replicable? If so, how?

More and more people will be supported throughout their everyday life in their business activities and also in the public affairs. As the signs, phrases, dialects and languages are neverending our project is long term. Time after time more and more people can be reached and can be involved as it eases their life and also help their social integration.

Winning entries present a strong plan for how they will achieve and mark growth. Identify your six-month milestone for growing your impact

Full high-teh, modern website with new fingerspell content

Six-Month Tasks
Task 1

Mobile platform development.

Task 2

Fingerspell content maintenance and expansion

Task 3

Development of a website

Now think bigger! Identify your 12-month impact milestone

Online interpreter service

12-Month Tasks
Task 1

Videorecording all the hungarian finger spelling dialect

Task 2

Videorecording german finger spelling

Task 3

Intraducing the online interpreter service and employ at least 3 interpreters

How many people have been impacted by your project?

More than 10,000

How many people could be impacted by your project in the next three years?

More than 10,000

Explain how your company, program, service or product is structured


What barriers have hindered the success of your project to date? How do you plan to overcome these and other challenges as you grow your solution?

The main problem is that the income from the finger spelling corses is not enough for the maintenance of the office, and for the salary of the employees and for the project management.
If I could manage to live from the grant and I do not have to find an other job, I would try to find more supporters and to apply for grants. I might put emphasis on the online communication and PR of the foundation.
Our long term goal is to analyse other finger spelling language families in order to make comparable all these languages.

How do you see the information-technology and media sectors shifting over the next decade? How will your solution adapt to and/or drive that changing environment?

Nowdays the smartphones, internet and chatting opportunities are spreading all over the world and we consider that our solution is taking advantage of the new trends, it utilizes the information technology and it adapts to the changing environment. The smartphones will not go out of style so our solution will not be unfashionable in the next years.

Failure is not always an option. If your solution fails to gain traction in the next two years, what other applications of the idea could you explore?

We believe that if the new services, homepage will be launched and we form a communication strategy the project wont fail. The only solution in order to reach our goals is to gain grant for the maintenance of the foundation. In the longterm, if the project will work we plan to cooperate with public entities in order to get continuous support, governmental help from them.

Expand on your selections, explaining how you will sustain funding

Nowdays we always check grant opportunities and we are continuously apply for them. I thing the civil sector will strenthen in the next few years, the companies and also the public sector will support more the NGO-s, ther will be more and more possibilities in order to gain money. In the long term, when the interpreter service is launched we can agree with telecommunication companies as we generate income for them, so they will support our company, too.

Tell us about your partnerships

The results of the project is integrated in the local and regional environment as it is free, anybody can use. Further plan is to process the Hungarian seven dialects during which we cooperate with the Public Foundation for Equal Opportunities of Persons with Disabilities and also volunteers help to realize our events.

What type of team (staff, volunteers, etc.) will ensure that you achieve the growth milestones identified in the Social Impact section?

The staff is the following:
Pal Bartos-president of the Foundation, IT specialist, project manager
Petke Lajos,Csömör Károly-finger spelling teachers and interpreters
Tasnádi Sándor-IT specialist
Halász Péter-communication expert
We tried to form a staff that has all the competences that is needed for the sign videorecording and teaching the finger spelling, for IT support and IT management of the videos, spots, for managing the projects and also for the foundation's communications. At events 10-15 volunteers help us in order to 'send our message'.

Changemakers is a collaborative and supportive space. Please specify any community resources you would need to grow and sustain your initiative. Select all that apply

Investment, Marketing or media.

Specify any resources you might offer to support other initiatives. Select all that apply

Human resources or talent, Research or information, Collaboration or networking, Innovation or ideas.

Please elaborate on any needs or offers you have mentioned above and/or suggest categories of support that aren’t specified within the list

As we have already made some researches regarding the HUngarian finger spellingdialects we are happy to share these information. As there not many webpages in Europe dealing with finger spelling dictionary if there is a need for developing a homepage we are ready to share our experiences in order to serve the best all the hard of hearing people in Europe.

Define your company, program, service or product in 1-2 short sentences

Facilitate hard of hearing peoples' life,develop accessibility,form sign language interpreting services,help social integration.