Kōrero with Jon

🌟 We are thrilled to introduce our brand new accessible vidcast series, starring the remarkable Jon Tai-Rakena! 🌟

Prepare for engaging discussions, empowering stories, and a wealth of insight as we delve into meaningful topics. 🚀

To celebrate New Zealand Sign Language Week 2024, we are launching: ‘Kōrero With Jon’ – This will be a series of videos where Jon will interview Deaf and hearing individuals who are connected in some way to the Deaf community. We hope you enjoy watching and learning about their experiences.

Deaf Seniors Survey

Deaf Aotearoa is doing a Deaf Senior Survey project to identify barriers faced by Deaf seniors aged 60 years old and over. This information will help plan for future services.

SURVEY DEADLINE: Friday, 31st May 2024

Upcoming events

Visual Language Theatre Workshop led by Ramesh Meyyappan – Wellington

This workshop - what? A two-day practical theatre workshop for the Deaf community. What to expect? The workshop will focus on: Lots of fun Visual aspects of characterisation through the use of sign mime Exploring various characters through mimed props and character transitions Nuances of characterisation in performance Exaggerations of ... Read more

Find out more
https://www.pumpdance.com, Level 1, 302 Taranaki Street
+ Google Map

Deafhood Identity & Culture – Christchurch

Identity process of embracing the cultural norms, beliefs and values of Deaf community. Deafhood workshop will focus on: Historical Cultural Linguistic reality of Deaf people Understanding ourselves Understanding oppression Comparison between Te Reo Maori & Deaf culture Deafhood represents a journey of self-discovery, cultural affirmation and liberation in celebrating of ... Read more

Find out more
Deaf Society of Canterbury, 80 Fitzgerald Ave
Christchurch, 8023 New Zealand
+ Google Map

Maori Crafts – Pake workshop

Learn about how to make a traditional Mᾱori cape, or Pᾱkē. This is a Mᾱori raincoat or cape. We will make a smaller version This may make a lovely wall hanging or keep it as a cape. Coffee will be provided with biscuits. Please bring your own lunch.

Find out more
Kamo High School, Wilkinson Avenue
+ Google Map

2024 Access Centre – Whakatane

We can provide: Opportunity to have a chat and to meet other Deaf people. Free information and support services Advice Translation support (e.g. support with reading letters and forms etc. New ideas for ACE workshops Information about Deaf Aotearoa services Information about assistive equipment for Deaf/hard of hearing. presenters from ... Read more

Find out more
49 Kakahoroa Drive, Whakatane, 49 Kakahoroa Drive,
+ Google Map

NZSL4U’s NZSL Coffee Club

--- 🌟 Exciting News! 🌟 The NZSL Coffee Club is back for the year, and NZSL4U thrilled to announce that they now have 3 coffee clubs in Auckland and Christchurch! Join them every 1st Sunday of the month for a fun and inclusive gathering. Don't forget to share this post ... Read more

Find out more

What we do

Deaf Aotearoa is a national organisation representing the voice of Deaf people, and the national service provider for Deaf people in New Zealand.  

Deaf Aotearoa also works closely with Deaf communities, government agencies and other organisations to increase awareness, promote New Zealand Sign Language and strengthen the rights of Deaf people.

Deaf Aotearoa is one of 133 ordinary members of the World Federation of the Deaf and is also the New Zealand representative.   

Our Services

Deaf Aotearoa delivers flexible and responsive services which accommodates the Deaf community’s needs. We provide knowledge, information, resources and skills. With these, Deaf people are able to independently manage events in their own lives.

Deaf Aotearoa works with government agencies, businesses and other organisations to provide information and resources on life for Deaf New Zealanders, the Deaf community and NZSL.

Deaf Aotearoa delivers key services to the Deaf community, in line with the objectives defined in the Strategic Direction.

These services are designed to ensure Deaf people can achieve their goals at any stage in life, from birth onwards.


Adults and Seniors


Deaf Aotearoa’s Hauora* service is a nationwide service that understands and responds to Deaf and hard-of-hearing people’s needs.

The Hauora service offers:

  1. needs assessment and coordination
  2. applications for assistive equipment
  3. information and advice.

*Hauora is an holistic approach to health and wellbeing. It is a Māori concept that views wellbeing as a combination of physical health, emotional/mental health, being socially healthy, and being spiritually healthy.

Adults and Seniors


Deaf Aotearoa’s Employment service is a nationwide service focused on getting Deaf and hard-of-hearing people into successful employment.

It includes pre-employment support and in-work support for both the Deaf person and employers.

The Employment service offers support for:

  • Deaf and hard-of-hearing people to get a job
  • Deaf and hard-of-hearing people to remain in their job
  • employers to understand more about employing Deaf people, including information on Deaf culture and funding for New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL) interpreters in the workplace.

Children and Youth

First Signs

A nationwide Deaf Aotearoa service for Deaf and hard-of-hearing children aged 0-5, supporting families and whānau with:

  • Learning New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL)
  • Language development
  • Learning about being Deaf/hard-of-hearing in Aotearoa
  • Connecting with other families and Deaf role models.

First Signs brings NZSL into the home and family/whānau environments, making learning NZSL fun.

iSign Interpreting Service

iSign enables access and participation for Deaf people by providing professional and confidential New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL) interpreting services.

iSign is a nationwide service enabling effective communication between Deaf and hearing people.

iSign matches job requests with available and appropriate interpreters throughout New Zealand.

iSign contracts more than 80 qualified interpreters who are all members of their professional body, ensuring a confidential and professional service.

Funding is available to cover a wide range of interpreting service jobs.

iSign staff can advise on available sources of funding. Funding information is also available on the ‘How it Works/Who Pays?’ page of the iSign website.

Send this to a friend