Who do you know who has really helped deaf people?

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The hunt for the finest deaf communicators has begun as leading awarding body Signature launches its fourth annual awards today.

Regional nominations for the 2012 Signature Annual Awards, which recognises those who are making a positive contribution to the lives of the deaf community, are welcome.

Forming part of Signature’s celebrations to mark its 30th anniversary the 2012 Signature Annual Awards, which will be held later this year, is searching for the brightest stars in deaf communications.

Signature is looking to uncover the inspirational stories behind teachers and learners who help to break down the barriers to communication that deaf and deafblind people regularly face.

Alongside honouring the talents of teachers and learners, Signature is also looking for the individuals and organisations worthy of its national awards including Community Spirit, Communication Professional of the Year and the prestigious Joseph Maitland Robinson Award for Outstanding Contribution.

Chief executive of Signature, the leading provider of accredited sign language qualifications, Jim Edwards, said: “Since the launch of the Signature Annual Awards in 2009 we have uncovered so many inspirational individuals and organisations that have shown a real passion for creating a society in which deaf and deafblind people have full access.

“Given the fantastic work that is being carried out across the country in improving deaf awareness I am certain there is still a wealth of talent in the East of England waiting to be discovered.

“The 2012 awards will be an extra special event for Signature as we celebrate our 30th year, so as well as honouring the outstanding work of today we will also be commemorating the progress of deaf communications over the past three decades.”

Nominations can be submitted at until Wednesday, May 2.

Shortlisted nominees will then be announced on May 16, with the regional winners being unveiled on June 13. Each regional winner will progress to the national final later this year when the UK’s Teacher of the Year and Learner of the Year will be chosen.