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Getting started

Photo: Deaf children at the SEND march in 2019

It’s important to plan your campaign once you have an idea of what you want to change, so you can gather the information you need and decide which decision-makers you may want to influence.

Plan your campaign

Follow our four easy steps when developing your campaign idea. You can also use our campaign planner to help you with this. 

1. Problem

Identify the issue/problem – if you want to start a campaign you will already know what this is.

Perhaps you, and a group of other parents of deaf children, in your local area want to learn British Sign Language. This would really benefit communication with your deaf child, but your local council doesn’t offer sign language courses to families of deaf children.

What impact will this have on your child, and other deaf children in your area? What evidence do you have?

2. Solution

What needs to be done to solve this problem? Is there more than one solution? For example, could the council put in place a family sign language course? Could they provide funding to families of deaf children to pay for a sign language course of their choice?

3. Who?

Who can help you to solve the problem? Who makes the decisions for the issue you want to change? For example, your local councillor may be able to support you to persuade the council to offer sign language courses.

Gathering support from other people to help spread the word about your campaign is also very helpful. For example, other parents, your local deaf children’s society, or even the wider public.

4. How?

How will you get your message across and persuade the decision-makers? Do you need to set up a petition, hold a meeting or get some media coverage? We have advice on lots of ways to take action.

Gather evidence

Collect some strong evidence and have it to hand when campaigning, to back up what you say. Good places to start are:

Know your rights

Knowing yours and your child’s legal rights is really helpful when you’re experiencing an issue – for example, when there’s been a change in the support that your child gets. 

Ask our campaigns team

Take a look at our campaigns resources, or get in touch.

Talk to a local group

There are more than 100 local deaf children’s societies. Find your nearest local group and ask if other families in your area have the same problem. They may want to get involved in your campaign too.

Submit a Freedom of Information request

The Freedom of Information Act (2000) introduced a public ‘right of access’ to information held by public bodies, such as councils, health, education and social services. For example, an FOI request can help you to discover if cuts to services are being proposed in your local area.

Contact us if you’d like advice on FOI requests, or visit What Do They Know? to find your local authority (or other public body) and to make a request. You can also see information that has been requested by others.

Contact professionals or council employees

Don’t be afraid to contact people in the relevant departments at your local authority for further information about services for deaf children, or proposed cuts. They may be unhappy about the changes too!

Attend relevant meetings

If the council are making a decision on a proposal which will affect deaf children, a formal council meeting will take place to discuss the issue before a decision is made. Most of these meetings should be open for members of the public to attend and you may have a chance to speak or deliver a petition. Check your local council’s website to find out about future meetings.