New service for young people with sight and hearing loss launches in Dundee

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North East Sensory Services logo

A new activity group designed to build confidence in young people with sight and hearing loss has been launched in Dundee.

The Young People’s Sensory Service (YPSS) is run by North East Sensory Services (NESS) and offers children and teenagers the chance to try new hobbies and build friendships with their peers. It provides baby sensory groups and activities for children and young people up to the age of 19, including regular days out during the summer holidays.

The group met for the first time this month, with youngsters taken paddle boarding and raft building in Dundee’s Monikie Park. There are also plans to take them to an adventure park to try archery and climbing, for ice cream at the beach, and to a picnic in the park. As well as the day trips, NESS offers youth clubs and arts and crafts sessions, and is keen to hear from the young people about what activities they would like to do. All meetings and activities are free for those who want to take part.

The Dundee initiative follows the success of a similar young person’s service across Grampian, with both groups set to meet up at a family fun day in Camperdown Park this month. Diana Daneels, young person’s service coordinator for NESS, said many blind and deaf children and young people face becoming isolated in mainstream youth groups when they are unable to take part fully in activities like team sports – leaving them feeling embarrassed and excluded.

The charity’s groups help build confidence and independence in a safe environment where children and young people with sight or hearing loss can be themselves without worrying about what others think of them. Group meetings and activities will be held on a regular basis during the school year in various locations in and around Dundee and the main hub at 10 Constitution Road. After-school clubs will be offered during term time and on in-service days.

NESS supports thousands of deaf and blind people of all ages across the north east in Dundee, Angus, Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire and Moray.
The charity’s main objective is to support those with sight and/or hearing loss live as independently as possible. Anyone who is interested in the YPSS should contact email Diana Daneels.

“There is nothing like this for children with sight or hearing loss in Dundee, and we know that many of these young people were sitting at home with no plans over the summer holidays. Children with sight or hearing loss don’t want to feel different from their peers, and at our clubs, they don’t have to explain themselves – they just have to be themselves and have fun. It’s a massive confidence boost for them and introduces them to a lot of new activities and hobbies that they might not otherwise have participated in. The groups also bring families in similar circumstances together and give parents of children with sensory issues peer support. We would encourage anyone in Dundee who is interested in joining to get in touch.”

Diana Daneels, who worked with NESS’s Grampian YPSS for 10 years before moving to Dundee


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