MEET OUR FANTASTIC TEAM

MARK SARJENT
CHAIR
Being hearing impaired myself since birth, and having a son with hearing impairment, the opportunities for deaf children and their families are at the forefront of my mind. With a work background with SEND, and sensory impairment in particular, I was keen to apply this knowledge through the charity - so after joining the committee, I accepted a nomination to become Chair in 2018.

As Chair, it is my role to ensure that our constitution is upheld, we remain compliant with Charity Commission regulations and that we remain affiliated with the NDCS. I also make presentations about our charity to interested groups, seek fundraising opportunities, and attend events on behalf of the charity such as CHSWG.

My family enjoy the membership of the LaMDCS and we have made friends in the parents and children who attend meetings and events, receiving invaluable advice and support ourselves whilst being able to impart some of our experiences of deafness as parents and personally to others. I’m proud of how the charity and particularly the Family Group is thriving, and how our children develop and shine within the group.
MEL WINDLE
SECRETARY
Among other things, my role as Secretary for the LaMDCS involves organising and minuting the committee meetings, and managing correspondence. I am also a qualified Teacher of the Deaf (ToD) and regularly lead the Family Group sessions.

The charity was a life saver for me and I have been involved for around 10 years. As a mum to deaf twin boys, meeting other parents with experience of deafness was the biggest benefit for me and both boys have enjoyed the activities offered by the group.

EMILY SEALEY
TREASURER
I became Treasurer of the charity shortly after joining around four years ago, and am involved in overseeing the monthly family group which my son loves attending. The family group provides regular access to experienced Teachers of the Deaf and to the NDCS Family Liaison Officer.

I found the group via the NDCS website when it was confirmed my son was deaf at aged 2, and I have not looked back since. Everyone in the group is so welcoming and friendly it feels like a real community of families and friends supporting each other. Having a network of people who have different aged children with varied levels of deafness means there’s always someone who can relate to how you’re feeling, or guide you through a particular issue – whether it be that you need emotional support or help with a DLA form, advice on Personal Budgets or encouragement in securing equal opportunities for your child.

JOANNE BISGROVE
VICE CHAIR
Hello! My name is Jo and I am Vice-Chair of the LaMDCS. As Vice-Chair, I support the Chair in the activities of running the charity and assist with the organisation of events.

I have been a part of the society for 8 years and a committee member for about six years. My involvement began when my daughter was diagnosed profoundly deaf in the newborn screening test. The group has been a huge support to me, and I feel it is important to pass on the support and guidance that others have given to me.

MARIE RAWLINGS
SAFEGUARDING OFFICER
As Safeguarding Officer, I process criminal record checks on behalf of the group, and share appropriate safeguarding information, training, and resources. I’m also the dedicated go-to person for any safeguarding concerns.

I became a member when my daughter was diagnosed as a baby. The support and advice we have had as a family over the years from the group has been invaluable. Being able to speak to people who had already experienced what we were going through helped me a great deal. My daughter enjoys the meetings and activities provided by the group and looks forward to seeing her friends each month.

NICKY SARJENT
PROMOTIONS AND MARKETING OFFICER
My role involves coordinating the charity’s social media and marketing output, reaching out to other organisations with similar aims, raising awareness of the group, and raising deaf awareness in general.

I became involved with the group 8 years ago when my son was born with bilateral hearing impairment. Since then, the LaMDCS has been a great support to our family, and I want to help ensure that we continue to be there for other children and their families too - to support, encourage, advise, pick you up when you need it, and cheer for you and your child when you experience those all-important wins.

My son loves seeing his friends at Family Group each month, and I find it so uplifting when I see older deaf children playing and helping him and, in turn, him playing and helping younger ones.

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