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Derby Deaf Childrens Society

The National Deaf Children's Society was established in 1944 and aims to enable deaf children to maximise their skills and abilities.

Derby Deaf Children's Society is a voluntary local registered association of the N.D.C.S. formed in 1981, and works to support local deaf children and their families. Both parents and professionals work together within the society to provide this support.

There are over 600 children of school age in Southern Derbyshire with a hearing loss of some kind, varying from mild to profound.

The work of Derby Deaf Children's Society can be split into four main types:

  • Providing Information and Advice
  • Providing Specialist Equipment
  • Providing opportunities to get together
  • Fund Raising
Providing information and advice
Between our members and the N.D.C.S head office we have a wide range of resources to call in. Information and advice is available on diagnosis, education, health and welfare, technology and equipment, and much more. The N.D.C.S publishes a quarterly magazine and locally we aim to produce a newsletter every two months to keep members in touch with what is happening for deaf children in Derby. We also produce a signed video of our newsletter for deaf parents and children. Meetings also provide the opportunity for parents and carers to get together and share experiences and views.

Providing specialist equipment
D.D.S.C aims to provide text phones for all local deaf children over 8 who would benefit from them. These not only help the children to be independent in using the phone, but open up more social opportunities as well helping with their English skills. Alternatively we provide fax machines for deaf children from the age of 5, to enable them to enjoy and develop their communication skills.

We also aim to provide caption readers to enable captions to be read from pre-recorded videos. This gives deaf children more access to the things that hearing children enjoy, as well allowing the whole family to be able to enjoy a video together, and again has the added benefit of helping with English skills.
We have also recently run a pilot project to supply pagers to older deaf children, to allow them safer independences.

Providing opportunities to get together
Deaf children can often be quite isolated. Many have to travel quite a long distance to school and do not have local friends they can get together with easily. Deafness can lead to communication problems that make it hard for the children to mix easily in a mainstream environment.

Deaf children need a varied and active social life out of school, just like anyone else, and so we aim to provide opportunity to meet other families in similar situations. These Include:

  • A Youth Club for children of secondary age, jointly run with Derby City Council.
  • A Summer Holiday activities for everyone, including hearing brothers and sisters.
  • Regular weekend sessions for football, soft play and swimming
  • Occasional special events, such as the Christmas Sing and Sign.
  • Occasional evening get together for parents and carers, without the children.
D.D.C.S Is also a partner in the Early Year Centre for young deaf children and their families provided a drop-in centre and point of contact for families with pre-school deaf children.

Fund Raising
Fund raising is constantly required to enable us to carry out all of these activities. We carry out many fund raising activities both large and small, and are lucky to have money donated to us on occasions by other local organisations. We have also successfully applied for grants from the National Lottery. Children in Need, Co-operative Partnerships and the Family Learning Millennium Awards.

If you would like more information about Derby Deaf Children’s Society, or would like to be put on the mailing list for our newsletter so that you can find out what is going on in the Derby area, please contact:

Jennifer Pawelski
c/o The Coach House
29 Kedleston Road
Derby
DE22 1FL

Email ddcs@hotmail.co.uk
Mob text 07584076778

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