Announcement: Sound Seekers merging with DeafKidz International

Announcement: Sound Seekers merging with DeafKidz International

Sound Seekers merging with DeafKidz International

We are very pleased and excited to inform you that Sound Seekers (The Commonwealth Society for the Deaf) is joining forces with DeafKidz International on 3rd April 2020. After this time, the new combined charity will be known as ‘DeafKidz International’.

The new combined charity will continue to support people with hearing loss by enabling access to healthcare and education, building on our work in Africa; and will continue to uphold the Sound Seekers vision, mission and values. Our hope is that as a new combined charity, we, together with DeafKidz International, will be able to comprehensively respond to the protection, health, education and wellbeing needs of deaf children, young people and vulnerable adults in low resource and complex humanitarian settings. The merger will enable us to widen the scope of our programming and geographical coverage, better supporting deaf people.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your support and generous donations to Sound Seekers. We hope that you will continue to offer your valuable support to us in our new home at DeafKidz International. Continuity will be ensured by transfer of key Sound Seekers staff, including the CEO, and Board members to DeafKidz International.

DeafKidz International will combine the 60 years of history, heritage, expertise and experience of Sound Seekers with the passion and innovation of DeafKidz International, positioning the new merged entity to become a global leader in the deafness and hearing loss sector.

If you are a donor/supporter of Sound Seekers, as part of the merger, we will need to share the personal data that we hold about you with DeafKidz International. For the purposes of applicable data protection and privacy laws, the legal basis for the sharing of your personal data with DeafKidz International is that it is in the legitimate interest of Sound Seekers i.e. so that we are able to effectively and efficiently manage and administer the operation of the charity currently known as Sound Seekers, and which after the merger will be known as DeafKidz International. Please see the FAQs page https://www.sound-seekers.org.uk/merger-faqs/ for further information on the merger.

Following the merger of Sound Seekers and DeafKidz International, the ‘controller’ of your personal data will be the new combined charity DeafKidz International. Data protection legislation requires the new controller i.e. the new combined charity DeafKidz International, to provide you with their privacy statement, which can be found here: http://www.deafkidzinternational.org/res/DeafKidz-International-Privacy-Policy_2020-03-24.pdf

So that the new combined charity, DeafKidz International, can remain in touch with you, we would be grateful if you would click on this link http://eepurl.com/gXf8qH to confirm you consent to Deafkidz International contacting you by email with information about the work it does and any events or fundraising initiatives it feels may be of interest to you in the future.

You can find out more about DeafKidz International here: http://www.deafkidzinternational.org/ 

You can follow DKI on social media here:  TwitterFacebookInstagram.

Thank you to everyone for your support and contributions, and we hope you will continue to follow our journey as we embark on this exciting new chapter as DeafKidz International and continue our life-changing work with children and adults with hearing loss worldwide.

Join us for our 60th Anniversary Fundraising Event on 11th December 2019 at Bankside Gallery

Join us for our 60th Anniversary Fundraising Event on 11th December 2019 at Bankside Gallery

2019 marks Sound Seekers’ 60th birthday! Join us on Wednesday 11th December 6pm to 8:30pm at Bankside Gallery to mark this incredible milestone.

BUY TICKETS ON EVENTBRITE HERE.

This fundraising event will be an opportunity to celebrate 60 years of Sound Seekers’ fantastic work and achievements.

There will be a silent auction (see details below to bid) and a chance to win some amazing prizes through our raffle. You can also enjoy Bankside Gallery’s latest Exhibition “Mini Picture Show” showcasing artists from the Royal Watercolour Society and the Royal Society of Painter Printmakers. Bankside Gallery are generously donating 10% of all prints sold on the night to Sound Seekers.

Please share with your friends and family and join us for drinks, delicious Senegalese canapés from Little Baobab, plus a special music performance on the night from our Ambassador; hip-hop producer, writer and performer, SignKid.

All the money raised on the night will make a huge difference to a small charity like ours, enabling more children and adults with hearing loss to access healthcare and education in Africa.

BUY TICKETS NOW via eventbrite in advance are £15 (plus booking fee), tickets bought on the door will be £20 on the day, so please order your tickets now! We look forward to seeing you there!

Thank you to our corporate partner, Specsavers, for generously sponsoring this event.

SILENT AUCTION PRIZES

Thanks to the generosity of our supporters, we are thrilled to share with you the following items available for our silent auction. You can bid at our fundraising event at Bankside Gallery on 11th December 2019 or if you cannot attend our event, you can bid by email.

  1. Four Club Wembley Inner Circle Debenture football tickets (minimum suggested bid £400):
    • to either England V Denmark at Wembley Stadium on 31/03/2020
    • OR England’s match at Wembley Stadium on 27/03/2020 (Opposition TBC)
  2. Four Gold Debenture Cricket tickets (minimum suggested bid £300)
    • to either a T20 Vitality Blast at Lords in 2020 in the Upper Mound Stand (subject to arrangement)
    • OR a T20 Blast Fixture at the Kia Oval in 2020 in the OCS Stand (subject to arrangement)
  3. Two Centre Court Tickets to the Nature Valley International Tennis on 26/06/2020 (minimum suggested bid £150)
  4. Four exclusive tickets to the Garsington Opera for the performance of Fidelio, on 30/06/2020 (minimum suggested bid £350)
  5. 2 x family tickets to the Severn Valley Heritage Steam Railway (minimum suggested bid £50 per family ticket) 
  6. Family ticket to Amerton Railway in Staffordshire with exclusive trip on a locomotive footplate (suggested minimum bid £25)
  7. Glass mounted photograph ‘Glacial Impressions’ by Clint Singh (minimum suggested bid £150)
  8. Signed book ‘Listen World’ by Evelyn Glennie (minimum suggested bid £25)
  9. Framed Heron bird print by artist Lucy Dean (minimum suggested bid £30)
  10. Original artwork by Elaine McCracken, ‘Songline’, Oil on Canvas (minimum suggested bid £400)

To bid on items, you can email tanya@sound-seekers.org.uk with your name, contact email and phone number, with your item and the bid by SUNDAY 15th DECEMBER 2019. Those with the winning bid will be notified on Monday 16th December 2019.

We would like to thank everyone who generously donated towards our silent auction list above as well as those who contributed to our raffle prizes.
Special thanks to the following companies:
  • Boden
  • ChariTable Bookings
  • Cote Brasserie
  • Experience Days
  • MED-EL UK Ltd
  • Naked Wines
  • The Santon Group
  • Widex

Three years since becoming an Audiologist in Malawi

Three years since becoming an Audiologist in Malawi

Mwanaisha Phiri: Lead Audiologist at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre

We are pleased to share an update on one of our Audiologists in Malawi.

Mwanaisha Phiri became one of the first two Malawian Audiologists after graduating with a Masters degree in Audiological Science at the University of Manchester in December 2016, sponsored by Sound Seekers.

Three years on since qualifying and Mwanaisha now leads the team at the Audiology Clinic established at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre. These comprehensive audiology services includes clinic and outreach services, the first of it’s kind in a government hospital in Malawi, making it a leader in audiology in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Mwanaisha reflects on the past three years and her experience in this vital role in Malawi:

I have been working as an audiologist for almost 3 years now after graduating from the University of Manchester in England. Audiology practice in Malawi is fun and interesting because for the past few years after graduation, I have acquired knowledge and skills in almost all the specialities within the Audiology profession such as, newborn hearing screening, basic balance assessment and management, diagnosing hearing losses and hearing aid fitting for both adults and children, switching on and mapping of the cochlear implants, organising and conducting the outreach programmes for both the communities and school hearing screening.

Additionally, I have been a coordinator and a co-author of the two recently published papers entitled: ‘Diagnostic accuracy of non-specialist versus specialist health workers in diagnosing hearing loss and ear disease in Malawi’ and secondly ‘An Intervention to Improve Uptake of Referrals for Children with Ear Disease or Hearing Loss in Thyolo District , Malawi.’

There is still more to learn and practice but I feel proud to be one of the first Audiologists in Malawi who is helping to diagnose and treat different levels of hearing loss to enable people to hear better and refer those that cannot hear either to the deaf school or a possible cochlear candidacy in Malawi.

As a Malawian Audiologist I am so excited to have helped children like Ellen, pictured below” to hear better.

Ellen Chimwaza, age 10, Malawi

“Ellen Chimwaza, a 10 year old child, was born with reduced hearing in both ears, the cause unknown as she had no history of any serious illness since birth. Ellen kept repeating grade 1 and 2 in school before she visited the Audiology Clinic at QECH in 2017.

I assessed Ellen’s hearing and diagnosed her bilateral hearing loss. I was able to fit her with her two hearing aids and the same year she passed her exam and went into grade 3. Since then she has continued to improve in class and last year she also passed her exams and is currently in Grade 4.

Ellen is now happy that she hears much better in class and at home than before.

The hearing aids have changed her life.”

 

                            

Launch of new Audiology Clinic at Arthur Davison Children’s Hospital

Launch of new Audiology Clinic at Arthur Davison Children’s Hospital

We are happy to announce the launch of our new Audiology Clinic at Arthur Davison Children’s Hospital (ADH) in Ndola, Zambia, which was officially opened on 20th June 2019. This is an incredible achievement as we celebrate the opening of a second audiology clinic in a government hospital in Zambia.

The new audiology service is fully equipped to complete hearing assessments for adults and children and includes an ear mould lab to fit hearing aids for those identified with hearing loss, which is currently being led by our volunteer Audiologist, Matt Clarkson, who has been in Ndola since February overseeing the setup of the new audiology clinic (you can read Matt’s blog on his experience volunteering here).

As part of the project, we have sponsored one of the nurses from ADH to study for a year at the University of Nairobi for a Diploma in Clinical Audiology and Public Health Otology, who will return to ADH later this year to lead the audiology services going forward.

 

We would like to say a special thank you to Jersey Overseas Aid for their generously funding this project as without their support, none of this work would be possible.

Additionally, we would like to say a massive thank you to all the team at ADH and our volunteer Audiologist Matt, for all their hard work in the set-up of the clinic.

Since the clinic opened in June, over 50 patients have already been seen and those identified with hearing loss have received the appropriate management.

Special Needs Teachers Training & After School Clubs in Ndola

Special Needs Teachers Training & After School Clubs in Ndola

In March 2019, thanks to the generous support of the British and Foreign School Society, we started a new project in the only 3 deaf units in mainstream primary schools in Ndola, Zambia. We trained 30 special needs teachers that work within these units  at Kanshenshi, Kamba and Chilengwa Primary schools to advance their Zambian Sign Language skills to improve the quality of education delivered to their deaf students.

 

As part of our new project in Ndola, Zambia, we also set up weekly after school clubs within the 3 deaf units in primary schools, led by the trained teachers and a sign language interpreter, to help teach basic sign language for mainstream students and help to improve inclusion and interaction between deaf students and mainstream students.

Please click here to read more about the project’s progress so far, celebrated during Deaf Awareness Week 2019. 

New fundraiser Ann-Marie McIntyre

New fundraiser Ann-Marie McIntyre

We are thrilled that Ann-Marie has decided to fundraise for Sound Seekers for her 2019 London Marathon Place!

Ann -Marie started running 30 years ago and now at 61 years old was able to achieve her long-term goal to get a place in the London Marathon which was granted through the Rugby & Northampton Athletics Club. Being deaf herself, she understands the importance of accessing hearing healthcare services which is why she decided to support Sound Seekers.

Please help Ann-Marie reach her target by supporting her fundraising page here.

She will be joining our 2019 London Marathon runner Emma Singer in the race.

 

Welcome our new Ambassador, Signkid

Welcome our new Ambassador, Signkid

We are so excited to announce our new Ambassador, Signkid!

Signkid is the UK’s first and only deaf music producer, writer and performer to have pioneered and developed a unique aesthetic by integrating and adapting British Sign language (BSL) signing into a visually based language suited specifically for live hip-hop music performance.

We are delighted that he is joining us to raise awareness of our work and to champion our cause.

To listen to some examples of his amazing work please click here or to read the full lyrics click here.

To read more about the Sound Seekers team please click here.

Sound Seekers 2019 London Marathon runner, Emma Singer!

Sound Seekers 2019 London Marathon runner, Emma Singer!

We are pleased to announce that Emma Singer is our London Marathon 2019 runner.

Please support Emma’s fundraising which will help people with hearing loss in Africa. She needs your support and your donations to take her closer to reaching her fundraising goal!

Please click here to be directed to Emma’s fundraising page.

 

New video of our work in Malawi

New video of our work in Malawi

To celebrate International Day of Persons with Disabilities on 3rd December 2018, we are thrilled to share our latest video showcasing our work in Malawi. Please take five minutes to watch our video below to find out how our partnership with Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre is making it possible for children and adults with hearing loss in the Southern Region of Malawi to access vital hearing care services and how our recent training of Itinerant Special Needs Teachers will help more children with hearing loss like Happy and Shakira to get the support they need in school.

Sound Seekers in Malawi: Watch the moment Samuyeli hears again and find out how Shakira and Happy are progressing at school

Without your donations, none of our work would be possible.

This Christmas, please donate and help us reach more children with hearing loss like Shakira, Happy and Samueli to improve their lives.

Welcome our new CEO, Kavita Prasad

Welcome our new CEO, Kavita Prasad

June 2018 brings a big change at Sound Seekers, as we begin an exciting new chapter with a new CEO, Kavita Prasad, at the helm.

After three successful years, Emma Judge has stood down as CEO and Kavita Prasad, previously our Head of Programmes, begins her new role. Kavita has been spearheading our programmes at Sound Seekers since she joined us in January 2017, in which time we have seen our programmes go from strength to strength.

Kavita has over ten years’ experience in programme management and development and extensive technical expertise on disability inclusion, having previously worked with disability-focused organisations, including Handicap International (now Humanity and Inclusion) and Leonard Cheshire Disability.  Prior to joining Sound Seekers, Kavita was seconded by Handicap International to The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) to support the mainstreaming of disability in UNRWA programmes and services.  She has a Masters’ degree in Public Health from the University of Leeds and a Bachelors’ degree in Physiotherapy and has lived and worked in South Asia and the Middle East.

We look forward to Kavita leading Sound Seekers into a new and exciting phase of growth and development.

Read more about the Sound Seekers team here.

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