Portsmouth charity helping deaf children launches new online programmes

INTERACTIVE online programmes are helping parents teach their deaf children to speak clearly and confidently.

Wednesday, 18th October 2017, 6:38 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 4:02 am
The staff, children and guests who took part in the event

Designed by The Elizabeth Foundation, the Let’s Listen and Talk online activities help families being supported by the Cosham-based charity.

The portfolio of learning projects was launched at an event yesterday attended by Dame Evelyn Glennie and hosted by The Elizabeth Foundation president Ann Rachlin.

The Let’s Listen and Talk website provides parents with advice, insights, theoretical and practical tips to help children with hearing loss from birth to five years develop crucial listening and language skills, reinforced by individual professional support.

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Dame Evelyn, the world’s premier solo percussionist, who is also profoundly deaf and patron of the charity, said: ‘When I was made aware of The Elizabeth Foundation’s new programme I couldn’t help thinking about my own journey, and how important it was to have my parents support throughout.

‘Being able to access valuable information and put it into practice from your own home is a huge achievement and I’m sure it will help families in ways we simply cannot imagine.

‘My parents heard the words, I did not. With their support I learned to feel sound. Now, here I am teaching the world to listen.’

The Elizabeth Foundation is a national charity, founded in 1981, that teaches deaf babies and preschool children to learn to listen and talk.

Currently 83 families from nine counties attend the education programmes at the charity’s centre off Portsdown Hill Road.

The new Let’s Listen and Talk preschool programme complements the recently launched baby and toddler programmes.

Ms Rachlin said: ‘We all know how easy it is to return home after receiving medical advice, wondering what we have forgotten or misheard. Using this innovative online programme, provides an ongoing learning journey where parents can teach their child with confidence in the familiarity of their own home.

‘Our new programme will ensure no time is lost in showing their deaf child how to communicate through speech.’

The Let’s Listen and Talk programmes are user-friendly with informative videos.

The parent and child activities, based on those successfully taught in The Elizabeth Foundation’s classrooms, allow parents to encourage the development of listening and speaking skills in the comfort of their own home and at their own pace.

For more information visit letslistenandtalk.org.