Action on Hearing Loss Scotland
The Charity helps people that are deaf or hard of hearing. They work to create a world where deafness or hearing loss do not limit or determine opportunity. This is done through campaigning & lobbying, raising awareness of hearing gloss, promotion hearing health, providing services and medical research.
Hearing loss is a major public heath issue in Scotland with 850,000 people affected by some form of hearing loss – that’s one in six of the population. As our society ages, the numbers are set to group to more than 1.2million by 2031. Action on hearing loss is the leading organisation representing deaf people, hard of hearing people and people with tinnitus and they provide personal support, support on employment and source new solutions that help overcome the daily barriers and obstacles hearing loss creates.
Support from Crerar Trust
One of their key services is the Hear to Help project; this currently runs successfully in Tayside, Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Ayrshire & Arran and the Borders.
At present, there 19 locations at which they successfully run Hear To Help drop-in’s at, including Brechin, Montrose, Forfar, Arbroath, Dundee, Broughty Ferry, Lochee, Blairgowrie and Perth. Furthermore, they also do home visits and visits to approximately 22 sheltered housing and day care centres, and the aim is to significantly increase this number to ensure that those who are unable to attend the drop in sessions till have access to our services. The funding from Crerar Trust will support toolboxes for 10 volunteers, the toolboxes consist of equipment they use to maintain the hearing aid’s for the service users.
The volunteers offer invaluable knowledge and support to new service users in respect to managing their deafness. By providing advice, mentoring and sign posting to other services they can help individuals manage their conditions and offer support as required.
Hearing loss hinders communication, independence and confidence and makes people feel vulnerable and isolated. For older people the transition to using hearing aids requires considerable support. Hearing aids require careful monitoring instruction ad encouragement for the user. To work properly they need regular maintenance but these procedures are fiddley and difficult, even for people with excellent dexterity and eye sight. Too many people struggle with this open newly acquired disability and hear to help is a service that makes a significant difference to thousands of peoples everyday lives.
Teams of staff and volunteers will offer support in terms of:
- Showing someone how to clean and look after their hearing aid
- Offering support based on personal experience
- Giving advice to the hearing aid user and their family, to aid communication
- Providing information and sign posting to other services
- Discussing equipment which may help with improving the quality of everyday life