Our Deaf Club in St Petersburg is preparing for a visit from Father Frost and the Snow Maiden at their New Year party. As they see in 2012, they have plenty to look forward to.
The Deaf Club itself is moving back from temporary accommodation in the suburbs to the Early Intervention Institute in the centre of the city. The Institute has pioneered therapies and activities for young disabled children which encourage them to develop their skills and personalities, become as independent as possible, and to be included into society as a whole. The new home is closer to public transport and has been adapted to make it accessible for wheelchair users (and pushchairs).
On a more personal note, Olya, will be fitted with cochlear implants (a device which can replace the sensation of hearing) next year. We all hope that this will help Olya to quickly recognise the world of sound, to listen to music and to children and adults talking at the club. Our Deaf Club plays a vital part in both helping parents lobby for appropriate treatment to be provided as early as possible, and also in providing the vital therapy children need to get the most out of cochlear implants.
The club also has a new member, 10-month-old Vanya and his Mum and Dad. £12 or $19 would pay for a music therapy session for Vanya, Olya and the other children, a fantastic way of helping them tune into sound.