For deaf people, accurate live subtitling can allow full engagement with the visual content. That’s why, as a deaf person, and a Sense Digital Champion, I was particularly interested to learn more about the development of subtitling technologies at a recent Ofcom round-table event, feeding back on the quality of broadcast live subtitles.
Children with sensory impairments made friends and experienced something completely new when they recently joined Sense for an accessible sailing adventure in the Pennines.
As a Children and Family Support Worker for Sense, I’m lucky enough to witness the connections made and experiences shared by families and children who, through our monthly events, get to try new things like canoeing and sailing.
Once a month, we organise family events in various locations across northern England, helping them to create lifelong friendships whilst supporting one another. They get the opportunity to take part in activities they wouldn’t normally try – whilst ensuring they are accessible, enjoyable and fun!
How can sound be made visible and tangible to young people with sensory impairments? As artists, that’s the challenge we set ourselves with a collaboration between Sense and the British Library, taking inspiration from its enormous sound archive.
My name is Emma McGarry and I am a visual artist. I have been working on a Sense and British Library collaboration to deliver an exciting eight-month project with a group of young people with sensory impairments.
Every month, myself and Judith Brocklehurst – another artist working with the British Library – come together to meet with young people who have sensory impairments and complex needs, at one of the Sense Centres in Barnet.
The internet is playing an increasingly important role in our everyday lives; we use it to talk to family and friends, search for jobs, navigate the streets, pay bills and buy Christmas gifts. But for many people with sensory impairments, accessing the internet and using new technologies can present huge challenges.
Online Today, a Big Lottery funded project, supports people who have sensory loss to get online. It explores how participants can develop independence through the use of technology and the internet- for example, gaining assistance from specialist accessibility apps to identify household products or navigate to a particular destination. At Sense, the internet plays an important role in helping individuals in Sense accommodation to stay in touch with family and friends.
I was privileged to be asked to speak at the Parliamentary reception for the Jo Cox Commission on Loneliness, about my own experiences of loneliness as a disabled person.
I am deafblind; I’m severely sight impaired and have a severe to profound hearing impairment. Accessing social situations and noisy busy environments can be very difficult for me. Feeling frustrated, annoyed, angry, scared or upset because I cannot access something, or go somewhere – due to the implications of my impairments – can be made worse by feelings of loneliness and social isolation.
At Sense, we recognise the importance of supporting our registered care managers. Their role is absolutely critical for providing high quality support services and enabling the people we support to achieve outcomes.
Registered care managers set the culture and quality for the services they manage – from the recruitment and support of person centred teams through to their focus on continuous improvement and development of their services. However, we should not underestimate the demands and pressure of the role. They will frequently be juggling many competing demands and requests, both within the service but also from families, commissioners and care managers, and from head office. How do they fit it all into their working day?
As someone who has sight and hearing loss, I would like to draw attention to the feelings of isolation and loneliness within one’s circle of friends and family. Although in some cases this can be attributed to one’s personality, it is possible to feel ‘left out’ by their nearest and dearest.
I experience loneliness on a daily basis, as do many disabled people I speak to. Public attitudes, accessibility and employment support are all areas that must be addressed if we are to tackle social isolation for disabled people.
I was born partially deaf and have limited vision as a result of Usher syndrome, a progressive condition which slowly causes my eyesight to deteriorate.
I always liked to keep busy with work and friends. However, as my eyesight deteriorated, it felt like my ability to do this became hindered.
But in reality it’s a lack of awareness and support that limit disabled people.
Putting people at the heart of decision making is a key strategic priority for Sense.
Our aspiration is to move to a co-production approach where people actively contribute to every stage of planning, design, development and service delivery across all parts of Sense, reflecting our ‘I’ Statement: ‘No decision about me, without me’
Last month, I went back to school… well for an afternoon at least!
Over the last few years, I’ve been lucky enough to be invited to one of my local primary schools, Chepping View Primary Academy in High Wycombe – where my wife works – to talk about living with a sensory impairment.
My visits have helped the children to understand more about the work Sense does, and the people it supports. As a result, the school council decided to run ‘Sense cinema day’ just before Christmas, raising more than £800 for the charity.
Each year, I speak to the Year 2 children about braille, certain technology that I use, and then I brave their questions!