independent

Tuesday 16 January 2018

Support for parents with deaf children

Little Tom Crotty and his mum enjoying a 'Sharing the Journey' event.
Little Tom Crotty and his mum enjoying a 'Sharing the Journey' event.

John MANNING

A NEW website is launching this week for a support group for parents of deaf and hard-of-hearing children that has been set up by a woman from Kilsallaghan.

Teresa McDonnell is the parent of a deaf son herself and following studies into the area, she decided that a support group was needed in the region to support parents dealing with a deaf child.

Teresa told the Fingal Independent: 'Our aim is to support all parents of deaf or hard-of-hearing (D/HOH) children irrespective of communication, education and technological decisions they have made or will make for their children.

' We plan to provide access to the most up-todate research information on all issues relating to D/HOH children and raise awareness of the social, educational and communication needs of D/HOH children.'

The organisation has been running since February of 2011 and this week will see the launch of its brand new website.

Teresa said: 'Since our foundation in February 2011 we have we have developed a baby and toddler early communication intervention program, facilitated three monthly baby and toddler play dates and a baby and toddler ' splash day' in conjunction with the National Aquatic Centre.'

On top of that, the busy organisation has put together sign language support and has a two week summer project coming up this August.

An exciting nationwide project the group is putting together is a collection of short stories by parents of D/HOH children, telling their stories and sharing their experiences with parents facing the same challenges.

The organisation is fostering links with health care professionals and will help parents link in with all the services and supports that are available to them and their D/HOH child.

A phone 'app' is on the way too for the innovative group who launch their presence on the web this week at www.sharingthejourney.ie which will be a hugely useful resource for any family with a D/HOH child.

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