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Archive for May 7th, 2019

07 MayCelebrating Role Models in Health

Action Deafnes logo

Today Action Deafness are celebrating Deaf Awareness Week!


As Deaf led national charity, Action Deafness has always embraced the Deaf Gain ethos, Action Centred Leadership (ACL) approaches as well as promoting opportunities for aspiring and inspiring Deaf people not only in specialist communications interpreting, community support or personal care but also playing a pivotal part in making a real difference in the lives of other Deaf, Hard of Hearing, Deafened and Deafblind people.

As you can see, we have many Deaf Inspirers. They inspire many to play an incredibly important part in the development here at Action Deafness and partners.

As this is the National Deaf Awareness Week, UK Council on Deafness celebrates Deaf Role Models in the UK.

Here at Action Deafness, we are delighted and honoured to acknowledge our Deaf Role Models

They all are our heroes. We salute you all!


07 MayDeaf Awareness Week

Celebrating Role Models in Health

interpreter now

Today InterpreterNow are celebrating Deaf Awareness Week with some important advice.

NHS 111 can give you medical advice when it’s less urgent then 999.  But as a deaf person how can you access this?

InterpreterNow has the answer …..

nhs 111 Final blogt

NHS 111 Video Relay Service Info [pdf]

or watch our video all about NHS 111’s Video Relay Service for BSL users here:

07 MayDeaf Awareness Week

SignHealth logotype RGB

Today SignHealth are celebrating Role Model’s during Deaf Awareness week – see today’s Vlog from Dr Emma Ferguson-Coleman, Trustee of SignHealth

Video Transcript

Hello, my name is Dr Emma Ferguson-Coleman. I work at the University of Manchester where I carry out research with deaf people who have dementia and their families. I’ve worked at the university for 9 years doing research that includes asking questions of the deaf community and deaf people with dementia about their experiences. I have also explored what happens in their life after diagnosis, the care and support they received – the deaf person with dementia, but also for the carers. Every day is different and varied. I have quite a variety of responsibilities that I undertake in the course of my work. One day I could be working with the deaf community, and providing information about dementia, another day I could be writing a reports for funding to support the work that I do, and on another day I would be writing an article for a mainstream journal about the Deaf Community’s experiences of living with dementia.

I do experience challenges in the work that I do; one challenge thinking about the way that I present my information so that it’s clear. Another is how to ensure that mainstream providers support carers, while at the same time having an understanding about deaf issues, to ensure that they meet the needs of the deaf community. I’ve attained many personal achievements through this work that I do. The biggest achievement was receiving my PhD in 2016. My thesis was on The Deaf Community’s experiences living with dementia. My thesis wouldn’t have been completed without deaf people telling me their experiences and their stories of living with dementia. So, I really appreciate all the deaf people that have contributed to my thesis, and my achieving my PHD.

I believe Deaf Awareness Week is amazing opportunity to understand more about deaf people. They can range from people with hearing loss to sign language users; there’s a wide variety of deafness, and sign language users. Sign language users are respected and valued citizens of the UK and the world. Recognition of this group is really important, so Deaf Awareness Week gives us the opportunity to promote information about this important message.

The charity SignHealth is a unique charity in the deaf world and I’m very proud to be a trustee of SignHealth, which meet specific needs of deaf people who have a number of mental health issues, go through domestic violence, and deaf people who have residential care needs. SignHealth delivers excellent services to meet the needs of this group of people. Without SignHealth many deaf people would be isolated, not receive support, and not have their needs met in their own language their culture and with dignity. SignHealth is truly an amazing charity.

To find out more about what we do, or to get involved, please visit
For information about SignHealth therapy service get in touch:

Call: 014946 87606
SMS: 07966 976747

07 MayDeaf Awareness Week

Celebrating Role Models in Health

SignHealth logotype RGB

Today SignHealth are celebrating Frank’s Story


My name is Frank Essery and I am the Senior Advocate for SignHealth. I am a qualified Independent Mental Health Advocate (IMHA), Independent Mental Capacity Advocate (IMCA) and Generic Advocate. I have worked for SignHealth since 2003 during which time I have gathered a few grey hairs! I work in the community and Mental Health Hospitals where Deaf people are sectioned under the Mental Health Act 1984 (amended 2007).

On a typical day I will arrive at one of the specialist Mental Health Hospitals for Deaf people. I go through security checks to restrict certain items being brought on to the ward, and on arrival I ring the ward bell to gain the attention of the nursing team so I can be informed about each patient. If it is deemed safe, I then meet individual patients one-to-one to have a private discussion (I am usually approached by around 4 or 5 patients). During our conversations we discuss the patients’ rights, their treatment and any other issues they wish to discuss. It is important for me to capture this information on SignHealth’s database for future support.

I would describe my core role to be a “listener” to the patient. Often the patients may communicate in an abstract way and the narrative is difficult to follow. Read more of this article