Could you be the friend on the line providing a crucial contact?

PUBLISHED: 05:00 24 September 2015

Communicating by touch helps deafblind people connect

Communicating by touch helps deafblind people connect

Archant

Royston Volunteer Centre manager Denise Graham’s regular look at the voluntary sector in North East Herts

The team at Deafblind UK knows that with the right support, people who can neither see not hear can live healthy, enjoyable and dignified lives.

This disability affects a growing number of people across the UK. It’s estimated that there are 356,000 people affected by the condition, ranging from people with some residual sight and hearing to those with profound loss who rely on touch to communicate.

Deafblindness affects an individual’s ability to access mainstream information and services, engage socially, conduct daily tasks and get out and about.

If the appropriate care and support is not provided, the inability to perform these activities can lead to diminished independence and confidence which often leads to isolation, anxiety and depression.

By becoming one of Deafblind UK’s Telebefrienders you can not only help to empower and improve the quality of life for their members, you can also enrich your own life.

Volunteers are needed in our local community to make regular phone calls to a deafblind person and engage in conversations of mutual interest, offering support and friendship – by doing this you will reduce their isolation and improve their quality of life and make a new friend yourself.

Bill, a telebefriender for Deafblind UK, says that he gets real pleasure from talking to deafblind people, hearing their problems and saying something to make them both feel better.

He said: “I get such pleasure from hearing someone laugh at the end of the phone.

“Volunteering is right, it’s satisfying, makes you feel good, so go do it!”

You can find the Royston & District Volunteer Centre in the Royston Town Hall Annexe, Melbourn Street, Royston, SG8 7DA

Phone 01763 243020, email info@roystonvolunteer.org.uk or visit the website at www.roystonvolunteer.org.uk

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