Right from the Start
2016 marks 10 years since the roll out of newborn hearing screening in England.Most babies born deaf are identified within a few weeks through screening and getting support right from the start has been shown to transform the language and communications skills of deaf babies.
- Campaign with us
- Information and events for families
- Share your story
- Gallery of baby pictures
A decade on, this early start is being squandered as many are being let down because they’re not receiving the level of support needed at this critical development stage.
Our campaign celebrates 10 years of newborn hearing screening and calls on the Government, local authorities and health bodies to work together and make a commitment to ensure high quality support is in place as soon as a child is diagnosed as deaf.
You can get involved and find out more information on how we help families of newly identified deaf babies, whether through newborn screening or later on.
Campaign with us
- Email our Right from the Start report to your MP and/or arrange a meeting with them to talk about their commitment to improving early years support for deaf children.
- Take a look at our new ‘Meet your MP video for tips on how to get the most out of a meeting.
- Read our report to find out more about the campaign.
- Help families like Sherrie's:
'My world came crashing down when I heard the words: “Your baby is deaf”. Everyone else had a perfect baby, it wasn’t fair, why us? Most of all I was afraid for Megan. Would she be able to speak, go to school?
I found the National Deaf Children’s Society website. That’s when I began to find answers – and hope.
Now four, Megan’s full of confidence. At nursery, when children ask about her implants, she explains: “They’re my special ears”.
We’ve applied for a primary school place and thanks to the National Deaf Children’s Society, we knew what questions to ask to check they could give Megan the right support.'
Text START to 70025 to donate £10 and help us to provide invaluable support like our Helpline and Family Events for parents of newly identified babies.
- If you like baking then how about taking
part in our Big Cake Bake? You can register your Cake Bake and get our free fundraising pack here.
Information and events for families
We have a range of free information and events for families who have just found out about their baby or young child’s hearing loss and many resources for professionals working with deaf children.
Attend one of our free events for families where you can share your experiences with other parents, take part in activities and get valuable information from professionals.
This guide provides information to help anyone working in early years settings understand the needs of deaf children and support them to achieve early learning goals.
Download this practical guide with top tips on how to develop communication and language skills in babies and very young children using everyday play and activities.
Share your story
Have a story to tell about your family’s experience of early years services? Look out for our campaign posts on Facebook and share your experiences.
Alternatively read about some of
Rebecca Stubbs from Stoke on Trent is mum to Lucas,
10, who is profoundly deaf. Rebecca said: “Everything has always felt
like a battle to get the support my son needs and, more importantly,
deserves. After Lucas was fitted with his second cochlear implant at the
age of 5 they simply supplied us with batteries! Where was the follow
up? Our teacher of the deaf has been very supportive but their time with
Lucas has been minimal and we’ve had to fight even to keep that. Lucas
is a very bright boy and in the top set for maths at school but I worry
desperately he won’t reach his full potential without the right ongoing
Rachael Sheard from Cambridge, whose son Elijah is 3 with bilateral moderate hearing loss, said “My son is currently at pre-school and I was horrified to discover they were sitting him at the back of the group during story time which meant he couldn’t hear a thing. A little careful repositioning would have surely solved the problem. This complete lack of deaf awareness is ruining this chances of keeping up with his friends.”
Gallery of baby pictures
We’re celebrated by projecting 100 pictures of deaf babies onto the Shell Centre, London. See the gallery of baby photos featured in the projection here.