Having just celebrated one month of working for NDCS, it seems like the perfect time to share what my first few weeks have entailed.
A bit about my team
Joining NDCS, an organisation at the forefront of campaigning for deaf children and young people has been a fantastic experience. The team has been hugely welcoming and it has been great getting out and about meeting regional staff and learning more about the excellent campaigning that takes place. Much of this campaigning is driven by dedicated parents of deaf children and young people and has had some brilliant results.
What have I been up to?
A large part of my role is to support local campaigners – and the Stolen Futures campaign more widely at large – so that together we ensure that there is adequate funding for public services for deaf children and their families. So far this has included:
- Reviewing the Ofsted statements of mainstream schools in several regions of England to see what specific provisions are being made deaf children and children with special educational needs (SEN)
- Preparing and sending Freedom of Information (FOI) requests to Local Authorities and Clinical Commissioning Groups asking for clarification on their budgets for deaf children and young people’s education, social care, and speech and language therapy
- Highlighting opportunities for parents to participate in council-run consultations and surveys on SEN reform
- Attending training on the 2010 Equality Act to find out how this piece of legislation can be used to protect and advocate for the rights of children with disabilities and/or SEN
Later this month we will be receiving responses to the FOI requests and from these we will be determining if any cuts to services have taken place or are scheduled to occur. We will then decide what campaigning steps we can take to reverse or stop these changes, so please do keep an eye on our cuts map for updates on your area.
Very excitingly, on 22nd March 2014, I will also be providing some training on ‘How to build effective relationships with local decision-makers and organisations’ at a Yorkshire and the Humber Networking Day.
How you can campaign
If you think campaigning sounds fun and would like to help us create a world without barriers for all deaf children, then why not join our Campaigns Network and lend your voice to our national and local lobbying? It’s a great way for you to find out more about what we are campaigning on and to get involved in some quick and easy actions! Or if you have an issue which you’d like help campaigning on, please do not hesitate to get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org