STAFF & TRUSTEES
Meet our staff & trustees
We would like to introduce ourselves as newly elected and re-elected trustees.
“My son Ben now 10, has been attending FCDC events since he was 6months old. He is profoundly deaf with one implant and one hearing aid currently enjoying mainstream school in Portishead. This will be my third year as trustee. I think it is hugely important for there to be somewhere for him to meet other children with the same needs as him. He also appreciates finding other children who are the same as him and has found good friends through various activities the charity had provided. I was previously a trustee for a local preschool charity and prior to that, worked closely with charities while working for the civil service. I am otherwise a nurse currently working at Southmead hospital. As a trustee, I am very keen to ensure the Family Centre can provide something for all deaf children”
Laura Orna (Secretary)
“My partner Henry and I have two children, Max is two years old and has bilateral moderate-severe hearing loss and wears hearing aids, Evelyn is 3 months old and hearing. I wanted to get involved with the Family Centre as firstly, I didn’t want it to close! I think it’s a great place for us as parents as well as our children, to socialise, share experiences and support each other”
Neil Curry (Treasurer)
“I was elected as a Trustee to the FCDC at the 2016 AGM on 20th Nov 2016. I live in Bradley Stoke and I am the grandfather of Savannah who will be 3 years old on Christmas Day this year. Savannah has had severe hearing impairment but could hear with the aid of her hearing aids but following re-assessment she was successfully transitioned to Bi-lateral Cochlea Implants which she received in May 2017. My wife, Janice and I, did not really know the impact of HI until it affected us as a family and naturally have been surprised and grateful for all the help that we as a family have received so far from the relevant support agencies. I can see that over the years Savannah will be receiving a lot of assistance and I feel that I would like to put back some support to show how thankful we are for that help. Hence me volunteering to be a Trustee for the FCDS. Since becoming a Trustee my role has expanded to also act as the Treasurer for the Centre”
“I am 50 years old and I work for Bristol City Council. I have 3 children, of whom my 2 boys both have partial hearing loss and wear hearing aids. Through FCDC they have been able to access events and opportunities such as the residential trip to Mill on the Brue and they both now play for the South West Hearing and Visually Impaired Futsal Team”
“My name is Ema and I live in Bath, I have 3 children, 1 who is 14 and he is profoundly deaf who wears a cochlear implant, and I have 2 others aged 5 and 10 who are hearing. I’ve chosen to become involved as throughout the years fcdc has helped me to meet new people who have/had similar experiences and it has enabled my child to meet together deaf children like himself. I felt really sad when I heard of the news of the possible closing of FCDC last year and thought my son will go back to being more isolated again and I didn’t want that to happen.
My deaf child has struggled hugely over the years, not living near any deaf children and feeling very isolated and different in his childhood and this is why I feel strongly about this charity going forward. I feel there is a great need to keep these children socialising not only for friendships, but for emotional and social support too as this is so important to them. It’s also very important to us parents as we feel isolated at times too and it’s nice to share experiences, knowledge and generally support each other.”
“I moved to Bristol in 2012 and now have 2 children. My daughter Zahina was born hearing but contracted meningitis at 3 months old. Thankfully she survived but was left with life changing conditions – a brain injury, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, visual impairment and profound hearing loss in one ear. She has had tremendous support from many wonderful charities and we are so grateful to them all. I want to be a trustee of the Family Centre as I think it’s vitally important that deaf children have the opportunity to meet other deaf children to encourage a sense of belonging. We have attended many of the FCDC events, all of which my children loved, and I feel in the years to come it will provide a safe, welcoming, inclusive space for them and for us.”
“I have been coming to events with FCDC for about 10 years with my children, George, age 11, who is deaf and Grace who is hearing and 8 years old.
George was diagnosed as having Auditory Neuropathy (now known as ANSD), just after birth, through the newborn hearing screening programme. At that time, not much was known about ANSD and we had to wait to see how his hearing and speech would develop. He eventually had one cochlear implant when he was three, which he really benefitted from.
George attends a mainstream primary school so the FCDC has given him a good opportunity to meet other deaf children and for us to meet other parents in a similar situation. Both George and Grace have enjoyed activities run by FCDC over the years, especially sign language classes and trips to Mojo Active.
Now my children are a bit older and I have a little bit more time, I feel that I would like to give something back to the charity.”
We are all committed to providing a network and a space for deaf children and their families and would like to work with everyone to achieve this.