Sir Ed Davey MP reads to local schoolchildren for Deaf Awareness Week


Sir Ed Davey, MP for Kingston and Surbiton and leader of the Liberal Democrats, recorded a tailored storytelling video for deaf children at Knollmead Primary School in Tolworth on Friday 7 May.

Ed recorded his accessible storytelling video at the invitation of the National Deaf Children’s Society’s Roadshow team, who delivered a workshop to the school’s deaf pupils as part of Deaf Awareness Week (3-9 May).

In his video, Ed read an excerpt from the charity’s book, The Quest for the Cockle Implant, which was shown to a group of deaf Year One and Two pupils. The Year One pupils subsequently came up with some questions about Ed’s work as an MP, which he has promised to answer in another video.

In the workshop, entitled Getting to Know you – the first in a series planned by the National Deaf Children’s Society – the Roadshow team talked about opportunities to get involved in events and activities, ways to get information and support via the charity’s Buzz website and how to access funding from its Make a Change Fund for community projects.

The National Deaf Children’s Society’s Roadshow provides workshops in schools across the UK to help empower deaf children and young people and to raise awareness of deafness among their friends, family and teachers.

Commenting on his storytelling session for the school’s pupils, Ed said:

“It was a great privilege to be invited to read to the children. I hope they enjoyed listening to The Quest for the Cockle Implant as much as I enjoyed reading it. A wonderful, inspiring story. Thanks to Knollmead for inviting me.”

Luke Collins-Hayes, who helped deliver the workshop for the National Deaf Children’s Society, said:

“Visits like this, even when they’re virtual, have such an impact on the lives of the UK’s 50,000 deaf children and young people and it’s so important when people like Ed Davey take the time to support them. We hope Ed will be able to visit the school in person soon.

“We want to reach every deaf child and inspire them to aim high, because with the right support they can do anything.”

Top tips for communicating with deaf children:

1. Speak clearly and naturally, it makes lip reading much easier.

2. Don’t cover your mouth. Covering your mouth with your hands, eating or chewing can make lip-reading very difficult

3. Be visual. Can you point, use gesture, write things down or type sentences on your phone?

4. Never give up and never say “I’ll tell you later”!