Stevenage project for deaf children nets £370,000 lottery cash

The Phoenix Group for Deaf Children - pictured receiving a cheque from the Inner Wheel Club of Steve

The Phoenix Group for Deaf Children - pictured receiving a cheque from the Inner Wheel Club of Stevenage - has been awarded £370,039 from the Big Lottery Fund - Credit: Archant

Lottery funding totalling more than £370,000 will pay for a project aimed at encouraging deaf children to take more control of their lives.

The Phoenix Group for Deaf Children, a charity based in St George’s Way, Stevenage, has been awarded £370,039 from the Big Lottery Fund.

The money will be used to deliver a life skills programme which will include lessons on managing communications, travelling independently, cooking and dealing with money.

The project will use social activities, integration opportunities and deaf and hearing role models to encourage deaf children to be more active and to take more control of their lives.

Some sessions will include sign language and topics such as building friendships and how to deal with deafness.


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The project will also help to develop the confidence and skills of parents and carers by creating a support network, including an eight-week course on parenting a deaf child.

The funds will also be used to set up parent groups across the county, each supported by a family officer, and will provide deaf awareness training to service providers.

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Jane Shann, director of The Phoenix Group for Deaf Children, said: “One in a thousand babies are born with hearing loss.

“Parents and families have been asking us for this kind of project to enable them to really support their child and overcome the barriers commonly experienced as a result of deafness.

“It will have a significant impact upon the lives of families as it brings them closer to each other and enables peer-to-peer support over a significant period of time.

“It reduces the sense of isolation experienced on a daily basis by children with hearing loss and encourages friendships that will sustain them throughout their adult lives.”

Alison Rowe, from the Big Lottery Fund, said: “The project is providing deaf children and their families with positive support, enabling them to lead more fulfilled lives.

“Deaf children will hopefully feel more empowered and in control of their situation.

“These projects will help these children and their families to feel much less isolated and more confident in their communities.”

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