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Christmas party raises deaf awareness

Young SEWDCS member Hayden Webb 2 years from the Vale of Glamorgan getting stuck in at the Christmas Party!

Families of deaf children came from all over South East Wales for the Christmas party of the South East Wales Deaf Children's Society (SEWDCS). The party, held on 28 December in Cwmbran, was a fabulous mix of fun and games for the children and a chance for the adults to exchange experiences of living with a deaf child.

Jace the Ace the magician had the children enthralled with his magic tricks and jokes, while Father Christmas found time in his busy schedule to call in with gifts for the children, assisted by his colourfully attired elves.

Get-togethers always offer a great opportunity for parents to meet others, relate stories and pick up useful tips. Often, this is about raising deaf awareness in schools, understanding what help and benefits are available, first-hand advice on how to deal with local education bureaucrats etc. Special equipment may be trialled through the NDCS’ Technology Test Drive service but it's sometimes knowing what to ask for and what buttons to push that is the challenge.

Sasha Parkhouse, Chair of SEWDCS, said: "The Christmas party was a lovely occasion once again, and it was so refreshing to see some new families for the first time."

The group is looking forward to 2015 with vigour and has arranged a planning meeting on 15 January at 7.30pm to discuss the year's activities, priorities and direction. The meeting will be held at Lakeside Court Offices, Llantarnam Park Way, Cwmbran NP44 3GA. If you are the parent/carer of a deaf child then you are welcome to come along.

For further information, please contact the team on 07880 258379 or email sewales@ndcsgroup.org.uk or visit our Facebook page www.facebook.com/SEWalesDCS

About SEWDCS

• SEWDCS is a local group affiliated to the National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS) and dedicated to creating a world without barriers for deaf children and young people.

• We support deaf children and their families in Cardiff, Vale of Glamorgan, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Merthyr Tydfil, Newport, Caerphilly, Blaenau Gwent, Torfaen and Monmouthshire.

• 90% of deaf children are born to hearing parents who have no first-hand experience of deafness.

• There are approximately 3,000 deaf children in Wales and 45,000 deaf children in the UK.

• 1 in every 1,000 babies born in Wales is diagnosed with a hearing impairment.

• 50% of deaf children are deaf from birth with 50% becoming deaf later.

• Parents with concerns about their child’s hearing can contact NDCS Cymru on 02920 373474 (Minicom: 029 2023 2739) or the NDCS Freephone Helpline on 0808 800 8880 or email helpline@ndcs.org.uk