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New advice service to keep residents living with hearing impairment safe

Hearing Help Photo

Left to right – John O’Brien, Angela Quinn, Mary Soar and Alan Charles

Vulnerable people living with hearing impairment are to receive crime prevention help to increase their safety thanks to a new project.

Derbyshire Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Charles has committed £4,916 from his Crime Prevention Fund towards Hearing Help’s ‘Safe and Secure’ project – an innovative service which provides practical and preventative advice to vulnerable people in the Amber Valley area.

Visiting the project’s Luncheon Club last week (Wednesday 18February), in Derby Road, Ripley, Commissioner Charles heard how valuable crime prevention advice and personal safety information is being delivered to people via a befriending coordinator. As well as reducing the risk of these vulnerable people becoming a victim of crime, the scheme aims to extend their support network and establish stronger links with neighbourhood police officers and community groups.

Feedback gathered via an anonymous survey indicates that people with hearing impairment can be among the most vulnerable members of society.

More than 80% of those surveyed said they still left their doors unlocked during the day and into the evening while 72% said sometimes forgot that their doors were unlocked. In addition, 68% of people said they would let a stranger into their home if they could not hear what they had said.

Following the visit, Commissioner Charles said: “Those vulnerable members of our community who are living with hearing impairment often face barriers when it comes to accessing information that can help protect them. This project removes these hurdles and delivers practical help and support in a more effective way. 

“My mission is to increase the safety of everyone living and working in Derbyshire, particularly the vulnerable who are often disproportionately affected by crime. To achieve this, we must make it easier for these adults to access the support they need and recognise their individual needs so they can protect themselves and their property and feel more included within their community.”

John O'Brien Director of Services for Hearing Help said "We are thrilled that Hearing Help has been entrusted with the delivery of this very important service to the vulnerable members of our Community and which will enhance the other services we provide."

Hearing Help is a registered charity based in Marehay, Ripley providing a central hub for all hearing impaired people and their families in Amber Valley and Erewash regions. 



Background Information

Forty volunteers support the Hearing Help staff team.  Services provided include:

  • Provision of outreach hearing aid servicing, re tubing and battery supply in the following local areas - Ripley, Alfreton, Belper, Heanor, Crich, Duffield, Somercotes, Long Eaton and Ilkeston.
  • Hearing Help hosts a very popular monthly social group at its headquarters. This includes a buffet lunch, entertainment and guest speakers and takes place on the 3rd Wednesday of each month.
  • The T Mates Community Café which is open each Friday 10am to 12pm.
  • Hearing Loop supply, installation and maintenance to Health Centres and GP practises, Churches, Public Buildings and Businesses.
  • Bespoke hearing impairment awareness training to organisations including Marks and Spencer, Southern Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group, North East Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group and Borough Councils.


Media Enquiries:    Sallie Blair - 01283 821012 / 07702 541401


Posted on Tuesday 24th February 2015
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