Weʼre raising £3,000 to help fund a specialised hearing aid for deaf/blind man
Crowdfunding is a new type of fundraising where you can raise funds for your own personal cause, even if you're not a registered charity.
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My name is Gordon Smith. I'm 57 years old, and have been blind since birth.
Owing to a massive ear infection in 1987, I lost 100% of my hearing in the right ear, and 86% in the left within the space of about 5 seconds.
Since that time, life has been an uphill struggle for me. The loss of my most important sense resulted in life-changing and disastrous consequences. Suddenly, I was no longer a self-sufficient independent person who, despite being blind, took most challenges in his stride. As a result, my self-confidence and self-esteem took a nosedive!
For instance, I used to frequently travel around the country by train and coach
unaccompanied, and think nothing of it. Suddenly, that was something I could no longer accomplish. There were lots of other things which also changed, and not for the better. One of my main passions in life has always been music. Before I lost my hearing, I was a reasonable musician, (keyboards), and a vocalist. But that is beyond me now.
In 1987, I found myself issued with a pair of NHS hearing aids. These devices were nothing but amplifiers.
With a few exceptions, that situation has not changed since that time. Yes, it's now possible to programme rudimentary devices to "Mask" certain frequencies, and exaggerate others, according to one's unique audiogram. But really, my passion for music and hearing in general suddenly disappeared along with my hearing.
Now, however, there is new technology available which is, I'm sorry to say, neither available on the NHS, nor attainable to me privately, because it's just too expensive. This is a source of intense frustration to me, as it would be a massive game-changer were I able to access it.
No, it wouldn't give me back 100% of my hearing. Nothing will do that. However, it would open a lot of doors to me. For instance, using devices such as mobile phones is currently a huge challenge for me because the only way I can use them is put them close up to my hearing aid which, of course, means I need to deal with the noise that two devices close together generate. This makes even cordless home phones quite a challenge, let alone mobiles. Not to put too fine a point on it, my situation is dire, and it has in the past driven me into severe depression.
Until 2016, I had my father to help me to do some of the things I wanted and needed to do. Now, however, I'm alone, so can't do those things any more. Having these new technologies available to me would be a massive, massive life-changer.
But this isn't just about me. I want to give back to the community as well. I have I want to give my services to those people who need them and, I believe, there are many people across the region who I could help if I had the benefit of a sense which most people, including myself until 1987, take for granted.
I'm desperate for change. I'm eager to give. I'm frustrated beyond belief by the virtual isolation which my current circumstances have inflicted upon me. I honestly believe that there is a space for me in the voluntary sector; I am desperately seeking the means by which I could help those who need the skills which I can pass on. I learned my skills the hard way, by trial and error. All I ask is the opportunity to help others avoid being left behind by today's technological society.
developed my I.T skills to the point where I am able to train others to use modern high tech devices. Also, for those who need it, I am able and willing to teach Braille. I passionately believe that literacy is a right, not a privilege. I’m also able to produce Braille literature of a very high quality. If only! If only I had some of my hearing back!
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Aug 18, 2018
From Jenny and Tilly Riley adams
Joyce & David M
Aug 15, 2018
Aug 10, 2018
Go Gordon. Hope you make it to the target!
Aug 9, 2018
Good Luck Gordon!
Aug 9, 2018
Hope you nreach the target, good luck.
Julia & Dave
Aug 6, 2018
We are glad we discovered your appeal. What an amazing man you are, you have so much to give to others but have been held back until now. Onward and upward, you deserve it. Best of luck Gordon.
Aug 3, 2018
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