Makaton SA

The History of Makaton

Makaton UK

The Makaton Language Program was developed in the United Kingdom in the 1970’s by a Speech and Language Therapist, Margaret Walker (MBE) who was working in an institution for the mentally challenged. She noticed that many of the challenging behavioural issues they were faced with, were greatly reduced when communication by speech was accompanied with the use of British Sign Language (BSL).

Makaton in the UK has since gone from strength to strength. They have over 1000 tutors and have trained many people across the country. Whole cities can be deemed ‘Makaton Friendly’ if at least 40% of the council workers including police, ambulance, fire services, bus and taxi drivers are trained in Makaton. Inclusive community life is the goal.

Margaret Walker (MBE)

Makaton SA

Makaton was brought to South Africa by the late Maggi Golding (MBE) and Christine Koudstaal in 2010.

Together with John Gouws, Makaton’s first signing consultant, they designed and recorded Makaton South Africa’s Core vocabulary.

The first group of 13 tutors were trained in Johannesburg in 2015 and Makaton South Africa gained NPO status in February 2018.

Maggi Golding (MBE) and Christine Koudstaal
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