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Welcome to Parents Corner!

Parents Corner is a section on DeafHear’s website dedicated to providing information and support to parents of Deaf and Hard of Hearing children in Ireland. We launched Parents Corner in 2011, and it has been a great success!

Parents Corner Spring Update 2018

The evenings are beginning to stretch and most of us have recovered from the flu, so Spring must be on the way!

There was an exciting end to 2017 when the ISL Act was passed and signed into law be the President on Christmas Eve. But now it is time to look ahead and plan in earnest for 2018.

This update includes information about matters that are happening at both a local and national level – so hopefully something for everyone in the audience!



DeafHear has almost completed developing a new strategic plan and brand.

The Strategic Plan’s key priorities include the development of children’s services and specific programmes for young people to transition from schools to further education and employment. More detail on these initiatives will be available later in the Spring.

Our regular regional parent and family events are continuing, and as Easter is early this year, make sure to check out the Events pages for details of what is happening in your area.


Weekend for Families with Newly Diagnosed children

The residential weekend for parents of newly diagnosed children is an important weekend for many families, as it is often the first time they get the time and space to talk about their child’s diagnosis, learn about hearing loss and share their experiences with others.

The most recent weekend event was in October 2017 and 11 families attended. Here are some of the things parents had to say at the end of the weekend:  

“I learned so much and it was great to meet other families and get involved in the various activities and workshops”. “Didn’t know what to expect to be honest, this weekend was brilliant!”
“I was so happy to share our experience and glad to hear I’m not on my own“. The next weekend for families is in early March 2018, and further details are available in the Events pages.


A very successful ‘Reunion’ Weekend was held last November following requests from parents for a follow up event to the weekends for families with newly diagnosed children that have been running for 10 years now. The theme of the weekend was ‘Building Confidence, Resilience and Well-being within Families’. Dr John Sharry was the keynote speaker. 32 families attended: well over 100 parents and children!


Education Partnership Group (EPG)

The EPG is a consortium of stakeholders interested in improving the education of Deaf and Hard of Hearing children.

This Group are seeking to become more active in the near future. Membership of the group includes Our New Ears, Sharing the Journey, DeafHear, Irish Deaf Society, Holy Family School and the Catholic Institute for Deaf People.

If there are any issues you think this group should be focussing on, contact any of these organisations, or email


National Consultation Changes proposed to Disability Allowance for young people.A national consultation will take place in February and March on proposed changes to Disability Allowance for young people.

The existing right of young people with disabilities to apply for Disability Allowance at 16 years of age has been seen as something that could discourage some young people from seeking employment, while at the same time the State was not doing enough to support people with disabilities to access further education, training and employment.

The Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection is organising an extensive consultation process in relation to how it supports people with disabilities to get employment.

The consultation aims to engage with people with disabilities, parents of children with disabilities, and other stakeholders to seek their views on proposals in the Make Work Pay Report. More information on the consultation is available in the Parents Corner News section.


International Conference

The 4th International Family-Centred Early Intervention (FCEI) Congress will take place in Bad Ischl, Austria, June 13-16, 2018.

This conference is designed to bring professionals from all aspects of the field and parent leaders together for information-sharing and networking.

The FCEI 2018 conference theme, PRINCIPLES INTO PRACTICE, will explore the practical realities of family-centred early intervention with practice-oriented workshops, cutting edge research, and thought-provoking keynote presentations. More information on the conference is available at this link:


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