ASTUDENT from Bebington High Sports College who represents the National Deaf Children’s Society’s Youth advisory Board has helped launch the My Life, My Health campaign.
Bethany Eason, who is a profoundly deaf and has a cochlear implant aims to spread the word about young people and deafness.
At the launch Bethany managed to meet Ben Rushgrove, the Paralympic sprint medallist, and discussed both his sporting career and the personal challenges he has faced in his life – including how he felt when he was told that he wouldn’t be able to walk or talk, and how he is now living the life that he always wanted.
More than 100 deaf young people took part in a survey and in focus groups as part of the campaign.
Each deaf young person has different experiences, preferences and different available access to services so the campaign was split into three areas:
Deaf awareness – how deaf aware are health professionals and staff. With discussion topics such as health appointments and understanding information given by the doctor and having the confidence to say if they didn’t).
Access to information – how deaf young people can find the information needed and also access the services to make life easier.
Independence – growing up to be responsible for yourself. A lot of deaf people still would rather go to the doctor with parents and relied on them for communication support.
The theme of the campaign is “snakes and ladders” and Bethany described her challenges in life as being not too dissimilar to the campaign: the snakes being the setbacks – the not so positive things that happened in life – whereas the ladders are the glimmers of hope – the support and the pockets of inspiration she received.
Every day somebody faces a challenge whether big or small however deaf people face even bigger challenges some so big they're so hard to overcome.
Bebington High Sports College is very proud of all the voluntary work and campaigning that Bethany does on behalf of the NDCS.