Following a successful AGM ... We would like to introduce to your 2018/9 committee:

It is very exciting that we have 3 new committee members who have joined us in 2018 and we would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who could join us and make this a successful and fun AGM

  • Chairperson: Millie Green- Millie was the secretary and treasurer in previous years, this is her first year in the Chairperson role. Millie is confident to lead with vision and is a great spokesperson for the DCS, doing a huge amount to raise the profile of the DCS in recent months.
  • Secretary: Natasha Gallagher- This will be Natasha's second year in the role, having previously been a committee member and is really pleased to be able to continue!
  • Treasurer : Louise Kemp- This will be Louise's first year in the role. Louise is very experienced, having worked within the finance sector for 18 years. Her niece and her family has been supported by the DCS and Louise wanted to become involved as a way to say thank you.
  • Professional Committee Member: Salim Suleman- Professional member, Head of Audiology and Paediatric Audiology in Swindon - Salim remains with us for a 5th year and provides a vital link between the DCS and Paediatric Audiology services.
  • Safeguarding Officer: Barbara Anscombe- This will be Barbara's second year. Barbara is a deaf adult and has had a close relationship with us over the years - She is a TA, specialising in supporting deaf children in mainstream education and is also level 6 BSL. She is a great addtition to the committee and brings some fresh ideas on board.
  • Committee Member - Sarah-Jane Fletcher - This will be SJ's second year on the committee and she brings with her a valuable link to The Link Leisure Centre in Swindon and brilliant enthusiasm, plus fabulous event organisation skills!
  • Committee Member- Gilson Sly- Gilson is a deaf adult, fluent in BSL and is a Youth Participation Leader with the Gloucester Deaf Association. Gilson brings with him a passion for helping young deaf people and an understanding of the issues they face, plus lots of fresh energy and ideas. - Gilson sadly stepped down in September 2018 due to personal commitments. We would like to thank him for the energy he bought to us while on the committee.
  • Committee Member- Nikki Bowie- Nikki was previously a volunteer and was keen to become more involved. She is a TA at a local school and has achieved BSL level 3. She would like to offer support to families and assist with communication and deaf awareness.

Meeting minutes are available on request- Please email us at with 'AGM Meeting Minutes' as the subject. 

The purpose of the group is to play a leading role in the development of all areas of support for deaf and hearing impaired children and young people aged from 0-19 years in Swindon and North Wiltshire. The group aims to:

  • Continually improve services offered to families and ensure they reflect good national practice
  • Monitor the impact of services to ensure positive outcomes for you, your children and your family
  • Link with other strategic groups that impact and make decisions that affect the services provided to deaf and hearing impaired children and their families.

​​It is an important opportunity for all professionals involved in our families to get together and share their experiences. However, without the opinions of parents, carer's, children and young people they do not know what those using their services feel is going well or where you need or wish to see improvements. There are also opportunities for issues to be added to the agenda, ensuring the professionals discuss what we, as the users of their services, view as important.

​​​​From time to time questions to provide feedback to CHSWG may be asked on either this website or the Facebook group. Please do use these opportunities to let the professionals know what you and your children think. We all have a different perspective, not least based on our children's level of hearing loss, communication method and educational setting. Parent representation on CHSWG includes a linked committee member of your local DCS group but new parent/family representatives are always welcome and interpreting services or assistance with childcare can be provided in order for you to attend meetings. 

For more information or if you would like to attend a future CHSWG meeting, either contact Tamara Turchet, Senior Teacher of the Deaf in Swindon and our CHSWG point of contact by email at or speak to your ToD/audiologist.


We hold regular events for all ages and always welcome your ideas and suggestions of what you would like to see. For our upcoming events, visit the EVENTS page. 


Our group has supported many families since it's creation in 1993 . Some of the children join us in adulthood to volunteer - We welcome all our supporters.

mission & vision

Our vision is of a world without barriers for every deaf child. We provide information and support for families with deaf children through our free membership scheme.


Our group was established by parents who have children with a hearing impairment over 25 years ago. It is still run by volunteer parents today. We organise fun events, provide a great network of families, hold fund raisers and offer information and support to deaf and hearing impaired children and their families in the Swindon & North Wiltshire area through our free membership scheme. We also work closely with audiology and other professional organisations involved in the day to day care of our children. We advise and provide feedback on the services they offer and have professional members on our committee to ensure we are providing a full all-round offering and support for hearing impaired children and their families. 


about our group

we continuE with our support and focus on COMMUNICATION.

Vocabulary and communication skills are important, regardless of a child’s hearing status or communication mode, and learning a sign language has many benefits in terms of supporting communication with a child with hearing loss. 

​​Using sign language alongside spoken language can reduce frustration and improve self esteem, may be beneficial to the development of verbal skills and could also help to improve literacy.  It can also help with understanding speech and can be particularly useful at times when a deaf child is not using hearing aids or cochlear implants. It also gives the ability to communicate with other Deaf children and adults whose first language is BSL.

In 2016 and 2017 the DCS offered the opportunity for members to undertake an online introductory BSL course, which covered Fingerspelling, Numbers, Colours, Deaf Awareness, Introductions, Family, Descriptions, Hobbies and Leisure, Time, Money, Days, Months and Seasons, Food and Drink, and Conversation.

Five members also took advantage of funded places on a Signalong course, a key word sign-supported communication system based on BSL that is used in some early years settings in the Swindon area.​​

In 2019 we will be continuing to support our members to undergo training in Signalong and BSL. 

​If you would like to know more about what we are currently offering to our members, then please feel free to contact us.​

We put parents at the centre of developing family friendly services by supporting the Great Western Area CHSWG(Children and young people's Hearing Services Working Group) pronounced chizzy-wig.

The CHSWG is made up of parents and carers of deaf and hearing impaired children, professionals who work alongside our families from health, education and social services and representatives of the voluntary sector e.g. audiologists, speech therapists, Teachers of the Deaf, NDCS officers and more. The group meets 3 times a year (usually at the Salt Way Centre, West Swindon).

AGM 2018 - Wednesday 11th April 

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Deaf Children's Society through JustGiving

Communication focus

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What is the Local Offer?

​​The Local Offer is published information about what services and support children who are Deaf/have hearing loss and their families can access in Swindon and surrounding areas.

The Local Offer webpage gives information about the Hearing Support Team based at Red Oaks Primary School, Swindon and multi-agency links, for example Audiology, Speech and Language Therapy and BSL tutors.

The information is presented in a user friendly pathway approach for different types of hearing loss, which allows the individual to click on the pathway that is relevant to them; to find out what the next steps are after diagnosis, information on future considerations and referrals to other professionals, plus the continuing support available- from the early years, through primary and secondary school years and sixth form. 

These are the groups of children that can access the service:

  • All children & young people aged 0-19 with hearing aids or cochlear Implants, their families, carers and educational settings within the Borough of Swindon.
  • We also offer information and advice on hearing effectively for learning to all schools and educational settings.

How is a referral made?

​Schools, Early Years settings, Professionals and Families in Swindon can contact the Hearing Support Team directly to talk about a referral; if appropriate they will then send you a referral form. All referrals must be accompanied by signed permission from a family member with parental responsibility. 

To access the Local Offer please click here


From May 2016, Ofsted and the CQC will be inspecting support for children and young people aged 0–25 with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) in England. This is an important opportunity for you and your child have your say, to help improve support for your deaf child. This National Deaf Children's Society factsheet has more information about these inspections and how you can get involved.