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      Hear to Inform and Connect service

      Action on Hearing Loss Northern Ireland, is part of the new UK Hear to Inform and Connect (2017-19) project, funded by the Big Lottery Fund. This project will help us to grow our existing information services to reach even more older people with hearing loss.

      Through this project our teams of Information Officers and trained volunteers will provide information in local communities across the country to ensure older people with hearing loss feel better informed about how to manage their hearing loss, and where to access further support in their local area. Our information teams will also work with care homes, community groups and local organisations who provide services or support for older people with hearing loss, to help them make their services more accessible and inclusive.

      Our Information Officers and volunteers will help in a number of ways:

      • by delivering information stands in a range of community and health settings such as libraries, leisure centres, GP surgeries and hospitals;
      • by giving talks to care homes, local community groups and organisations on deaf awareness, equipment, communication and Action on Hearing Loss services and campaigns
      • by carrying out basic hearing screenings using a hand-held screener to identify whether further assessment by a hearing professional is required
      • by providing demonstrations of equipment such as vibrating alarms and amplified telephones, to support older people to better manage their hearing loss.
      • by signposting to other local services for older people who are deaf or hard of hearing.

      We will work hard to reach older people who are isolated and have little access to information on deaf awareness issues, equipment, services and benefits. We will also focus on reaching older people from black, asian and minority ethnic communities, to ensure that our information services are accessible to individuals from a diverse range of backgrounds and cultures.

      The UK Hear to Inform and Connect project will launch in Northern Ireland in the autumn of 2017. The project will run until December 2019. During this time, we will particularly focus on growing our information services in areas outside of Belfast, in rural communities.

      If you work in a care home, run a group that includes older people, or work in a setting (such as a GP surgery or hospital) that provides services to older people, please get in touch with us if you’d like to organise a free talk or information stand. If you’re interested in finding out more about plans for our information services in your area, we can talk to you about that too.

      Interested in volunteering for the project?

      Do you want to help us provide information to older people with hearing loss, to ensure they feel better informed, better connected and empowered to take action to manage their hearing loss? Do you want to help us provide information to community groups and organisations in your local area, to help them make their services more accessible and inclusive? If so, why not volunteer with us, to help us deliver our information services, raise awareness of the work of Action on Hearing Loss whilst having fun and meeting new people.

      You can contact our Volunteer Manager at volunteering.northernireland@hearingloss.org.uk or Tel: 028 9023 9619, to find out more about getting involved with volunteering in your local area.

      Want to find out more about the project UK-wide?

      The UK Hear to Inform and Connect project is also taking place across Scotland and London & South East England too. For more information about the project UK-wide, please get in touch with Kerry Davis, Project Manager: kerry.davis@hearingloss.org.uk or call 020 3227 6075.