Charity’s Christmas tree encourages hearing loss friendly conversations

Shrewsbury-based charity Signal is encouraging people to include family members and friends with hearing loss in the festive conversations this Christmas time.

Signal is raising awareness of how we can all communicate in a more inclusive way in this season of goodwill, by taking part in the annual Christmas Tree Festival in St Chad’s Church in Shrewsbury.

Dressed with colourful fabric and aromatic oranges, Signal’s Christmas tree also features eight helpful tips for inclusive communication in the form of hanging decorations.

One in five people in Shropshire is estimated to live with some form of hearing loss. Yet this is a hidden disability which can leave people struggling to communicate and feeling isolated.

This feeling of isolation can be heightened at Christmas, when a person with hearing loss may be in the midst of a traditional family gathering but unable to follow the conversations and join in the merriment.

Facing a person with hearing loss when you speak with them, not covering your mouth, not speaking too quickly, or reducing the amount of background noise can all make life easier for that person. 

This can help them to make the most of their remaining hearing or lipread and stay connected.

Signal’s tree is among over fifty individually decorated Christmas trees adorning the circular St Chad’s Church as part of this year’s festival. The trees are on display from 9th December until 3rd January.

Take away a poster of all eight communication tips from the festival to share with family and friends. Alternatively, contact the charity for a copy, by telephoning 01743 364 644, sending a text message to 07950 782 819 or emailing [email protected].

Signal is the charity supporting people with hearing loss at home in and around Shropshire and internationally in sub-Saharan Africa.