Deafblind Conference 2023 – screen reader friendly agenda

If you are using a screen reader to access the Deafblind Conference 2023, we hope the following agenda will be helpful.

9.30am to 10.00am Introduction to ‘Connected Lives’. Nikki Morris CEO of Deafblind UK.

10.10am to 10.55am Option 1: Being Prepared, Going to hospital, getting older and living life. Doctor Annmaree Watharow.

Description: Living with deafblindness is complicated (and I know this because I live it) but there are things we can do that harness our own capabilities and make life a little easier and safer. This session will talk about how to be prepared with do-it-yourself hospital kits, being prepared for older age and exploring a variety of touch messaging systems.

10.10am to 10.55am Option 2: Connecting as a parent living with deafblindness. Kelly Taylor and Angela Priestley.

Description: Being a parent who has lived experience of deafblindness isn’t often explored. In this presentation, we will hear from two mothers: Kelly, who has two young children, and Angela, who has three children who are now young adults. They share their very different experiences of parenting as a person living with deafblindness. They will talk about the challenges, the dark moments, as well as the joy and the ‘fun stuff’. It is their personal experience, presented in their own words of how they have connected with their children.

11.05am to 11.50am Option 1: Disability and Caregiving: a narrative of self discovery. Poly and Ishan Chakraborty.

Description: This talk will primarily focus on a caregiver’s journey with her deafblind ward and the various challenges that she had to face in the process. Although this narrative is going to be particularly from a South Asian perspective, we believe it will resonate with the experiences of caregivers all across the world. Along with challenges, occasions of assertion and even self-empowerment will be highlighted in the talk. The journey of two individuals, who are interdependent on each other will enable the listeners to reflect on the overglorified/ much celebrated ableist notion of self-reliance and ‘non-dependence’.

11.05am to 11.50am Option 2: A day in the life of a support worker. James Griffin and Peter Hopkins.

Description: This talk explores the role of the Deafblind UK support worker, including how they connect with the people they support, and the impact that this has on different areas of their life. We will hear from Peter Hopkins who supports people in their homes and in the local community across Staffordshire, and James Griffin, who supports residents of our supported living complex in Peterborough.

12.00pm to 12.45pm Option 1: How do we connect, support and develop our workforce. Cheryl Northway, Jo Brady, Tracy Osbourne and Doctor Peter Simcock.

Description: This session will explore how Local Authorities meet the challenges of identifying, assessing, and supporting people living with Deafblindness in their areas. Cheryl will look at how the services in Wiltshire are structured, how they prioritise Deafblindness, what the challenges are. Jo and Tracey will detail the work of LAWDIG, how it has, over many years, supported workers who are often isolated within their teams. Doctor Peter Simcock will conclude the session by reflecting on training and developing students in Social Work to be more aware of Deafblindness, and their statutory responsibilities.

12.00pm to 12.45pm Option 2: State of the Art Creative tech for access. Tracy Harwood.

Description: In this talk, Tracy will highlight some of the latest developments in creative technologies, drawing on applications in entertainment, consumer and industry. She will discuss uses and potential for access.

1.15pm to 2.00pm Option1: Inclusive Innovation. Christopher Patnoe.

Description: Christopher will discuss a few key factors to think about how to build inclusive, innovative products – using Google’s Assistive Technology as examples of this in action.

1.15pm to 2.00pm Option 2: Reconnecting after Lockdown. Deafblind UK Team Members.

Description: This session, jointly presented by Deafblind UK team members from across the country, reflects upon the feedback and concerns expressed by deafblind people over the last three years and also gives an outline on how this knowledge helped organisations like Deafblind UK to adjust their support service strategies to meet these changing demands.  The session encourages attendees of the Deafblind Conference 2023 to maintain contact with one another and to work together, so that we can all collectively ensure we are part of a cohesive and lasting solution in line with our conference title, Connected Lives, and remembering that we are stronger together.

2.10pm to 2.55pm Option 1: Life with Superdogs. Megan Taylor.

Description: A Deafblind, neurodivergent, ambulatory wheelchair user with one hell of a story to tell! Learn how my life-saving Assistance Dogs, Ruby and Rowley, helped me to embrace my disabilities and gave me the confidence to climb UK’s tallest mountain for Deafblind UK!

2.10pm to 2.55pm Option 2: More questions than answers – a school story. Doctor Liz Hodges.

Description: This will use an example of a child entering a school and help to think through these key issues and look for the different perspectives of the people involved.  There are no absolute answers!  But this could challenge you to help think through the important questions.

3.05pm to 4.05pm Setting sights on the impossible. Alexandra Adams.

Description: Alexandra takes us through her journey so far of being, and becoming the UK’s first deafblind doctor.  A profession and lifestyle that much of general society still views as a taboo for deafblind and disabled people, she shares with us the reality that comes with trying to dispel the myths and misconceptions of being a deaf and blind healthcare professional.

4.25pm to 4.55pm The impact of Deafblind UK’s Support , Closing remarks Robert Nolan.

Please click on this link to view more information on the speakers:

Deafblind Conference 2023 – Meet the speakers | Deafblind UK

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