Deaf in East Timor

Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

Timor Leste (East Timor) is a new country that was formed after the war between East Timor and Indonesia ended. (West Timor is still a province in Indonesia.)

Before the war there was one school for the Deaf in East Timor with a principal and a few teachers. Soon after the war began the school principle and the teachers from other areas in Indonesia were allowed to transfer back to other parts of Indonesia. There was only one of the teachers who was a native of East Timor, so she remained in the province (as it was called at that time). At the time the war began there were about 35 Deaf students in the school.

During the Signed Languages Survey of Indonesia my companion and I met the Principal of the Deaf School at the Gorontalo School for the Deaf in Gorontalo Province on Sulawesi Island. He had been the principal in East Timor before, and told us the school for the Deaf there.

He said that they had been using the official sign language dictionary published by the Indonesian Government to teach the Deaf children in East Timor, so all those pupils would know standard Indonesian Sign Language. However, he said that the lone teacher who was left behind would not be able to cope with such a large number of children, and that undoubtedly the school was closed after he left. All of the graduates, and the current children at that time may still be using Indonesian Sign Language.

The government of Timor Leste recognizes the need for education for the Deaf. An official at a language conference in 2010 stated, "We must recognize the rights of our Deaf community....sign language will be officially recognized and we will engage the Deaf community to officially develop Timorese Sign Language (TSL)."

Prayer Points

* Scripture Prayers for the Deaf in East Timor.

Profile Source:   Anonymous  

People Name General Deaf
People Name in Country Deaf
Population this Country 10,000
Population all Countries 48,207,000
Total Countries 216
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 3
Unreached No
Frontier People Group No
GSEC 0  (per
Pioneer Workers Needed
Alternate Names
People ID 19007
ROP3 Code 114916
Country East Timor
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Country East Timor
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank Not ranked

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Primary Language Language unknown (10,000 speakers)
Language Code xxx   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Unknown
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Language unknown (10,000 speakers)
Language Code xxx   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Language unknown

Primary Language:  Language unknown

Bible Translation Status:  Unspecified

Resource Type Resource Name
None reported  
Primary Religion: Christianity
Major Religion Percent
0.10 %
Christianity  (Evangelical Unknown)
87.39 %
Ethnic Religions
10.91 %
0.50 %
1.10 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Christian Segments Percent
Other Christian
Roman Catholic
Photo Source Anonymous 
Profile Source Anonymous  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more


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