LOCAL CENTRE OFFERS HEARING HOPE FOR BRITISH TROOPS

A leading East Sussex hearing centre has joined a scheme run in conjunction with Help For Heroes to offer free, state-of-the art hearing instruments to veteran British Servicemen and women who have been discharged from the army due to damaged hearing in recent conflicts.

The Eastbourne Hearing Centre in South Street Eastbourne, which is part of the Association of Independent Hearing Healthcare Professionals (AIHHP), has teamed up with the charity and Phonak, the world’s leading manufacturer of hearing instruments, to help those who have suffered a hearing impairment in Britain’s current conflicts and have been discharged as a result. Former troops who have served in recent conflicts and fit the above criteria will be eligible to benefit from this scheme.

As well as a choice of cutting edge hearing instruments, eligible veteran Servicemen and women will be given free instrument fitting and a series of follow up appointments* from members of AIHHP.

The 9,500 British troops currently stationed in Afghanistan are regularly exposed to the blast of guns or ‘medium’ explosions measuring 140 decibels (dB) – far exceeding the noise level of 85 dB at which hearing damage can occur. As a result of this noise exposure, troops are at a high risk of suffering severe and even permanent hearing damage.

Head of Welfare at Help is for Heroes, Kathy Knell MBE said: “The new partnership with Phonak and AIHHP is a very positive step which will help a lot of returning troops. Addressing hearing loss gives people the ability and confidence to hear clearly and improve their overall quality of life.”

Graham Sperring, Director of Audiology from The Eastbourne Hearing Centre in said: “It is a privilege to have this opportunity to make a positive impact on the lives of our brave Service men and women and we welcome them to our centre.”

For more information about the programme, please visit www.hearingadvisor.co.uk or www.aihhp.org

ABOUT HELP FOR HEROES

  • Thanks to the fantastic British public, Help for Heroes (H4H) has raised over £141m since its launch in October 2007. All funds raised to date are either allocated or spent on the direct, practical support of those Service men and women who are wounded, injured or become sick while serving our country.
  • H4H has funded a variety of projects including the £8.5m Rehabilitation Complex at Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre, Headley Court, a new £3.5m treatment centre for Combat Stress, adaptive adventure training through the Battle Back programme and the creation of a £6m Quick Reaction Fund to support individuals in need.
  • In February 2010, Help for Heroes announced its lead role in the delivery of five regional Personnel Recovery Centres (PRCs) as part of the wider Defence Recovery Capability (DRC), which is an MOD initiative in partnership with Help for Heroes and The Royal British Legion.
  • Help for Heroes has committed to fund and lead the £60m delivery projects in Colchester, Catterick, Tidworth and Plymouth. Help for Heroes are also committed to funding to cover the operating costs at all four Centres for the next 20 years. In addition TRBL will provide an annual grant to H4H towards the operating costs at Colchester, Catterick and Tidworth.
  • The PRCs offer residential facilities to those wounded, injured and sick personnel from across the Armed Forces, and ensure they have access to the key services and resources needed to help them either return to duty or make a smooth transition into an appropriately skilled civilian life.
  • The Centres provide comprehensive training facilities, classrooms and gymnasiums with state-of-the-art sports equipment as well as opportunities to learn new skills and gain qualifications and are there for life.
  • H4H does not seek to criticise or be political. We just want to help and we work closely with the Army, Navy and RAF to provide support where it is most needed.
  • For more information on how the money raised is spent, visit www.helpforheroes.org.uk/how_we_spend.html