Peter and I moved to Brisbane with our son Connor when I found out I was pregnant with our daughter Isabella. With a second child on the way, it was going to be tough without any family support, and family is so important to us. When she was born she was just perfect, and she still is. In hospital the newborn hearing screening test was done and that came back as inconclusive. We were convinced that the test was wrong as we have no family history of hearing loss. After about three months of testing, we realised this was serious. Isabella was diagnosed with hearing loss and was fitted with hearing aids at just 3 ½ months old.
With Hear and Say being involved in her learning and developing speech, she’s thriving. Isabella’s therapist really gets the best out of her every time we’re in there – which is on a weekly basis. I have no doubt that she will fit in extremely well in a mainstream school, and she’ll enjoy going to kindergarten just like every other child. That’s mostly because of Hear and Say.
I would like to say a huge thank you to all the supporters of Hear and Say. The difference that you make to a child’s life is just incredible. The variety of services that Hear and Say offers caters to everyone in the hearing spectrum, because not everyone’s child has the same type or level of hearing loss, and different families will need different kinds of support. Whether it be counselling support, extra audiology support, or physical therapy lessons for the children. It’s not just about language.
Nicky, Isabella’s mum
Initially we were concerned for Isabella’s future and how we would communicate with her. But now, seeing her progress through auditory verbal therapy, we don’t have any doubts that her future will be a bright one.
Isabella’s becoming more and more articulate with each week that goes by. She has an interest in learning and loves reading. She follows her brother like a shadow everywhere – learning all his good and his bad habits. She has such a vibrant personality and we will all keep working towards giving her the best future that we can.
I was made redundant two weeks before Christmas last year, which was really, really quite tough. It took us four or five months before I managed to secure something else on a full-time basis. But Hear and Say were just absolutely unbelievable in terms of the amount of support they offered. They provided counselling services for us, and they helped with further funding services for Isabella. I couldn’t have forgiven myself if we had to pull her out of therapy because of not having the financial means to pay for it. It got pretty hairy there for a while, and we wondered whether we would have to give the house up. It was pretty tough. But Hear and Say was absolutely fantastic in supporting us through it.
Peter, Isabella’s dad