Meet the Team
Through experience, knowledge and passion, Earsay’s team is committed to providing support, information and fun for Jersey’s deaf and hard of hearing children, young adults and their families.
The Society is governed by an Executive Committee consisting of:
- Honorary Secretary
- Honorary Treasurer
- Executive Members
Our current Executive Team members are introduced below:
Michael joined the committee in 2015.
Michael is married to Anna and they have two children. Anna and both the boys were diagnosed with hearing loss and are hearing aid users.
The family joined Earsay in 2012 after attending one of the family events. They found the support and willingness from member families to share first-hand experiences incredibly useful and practical, and the events were a great opportunity for the boys to make new friends.
Honorary Secretary Viv joined the committee in 2009
She is married to Craig and they have two children, Heather and Martha. Heather was the first child to be picked up by the newborn screening
programme in Jersey, in 2006. She was fitted with hearing aids at 13 weeks old and received cochlear implants at St Thomas’s Hospital, London, when she was 19 months old. She is a fluent speaker and signer and attends Le Rocquier School with the specialist provision of the ARC (Additional Resource Centre).Martha is hearing, but was in the signing choir at primary school.
Viv and Craig joined Earsay shortly after Heather was born as Viv, particularly, was struggling with the diagnosis and had no idea how to best care for a deaf baby. She soon connected with two deaf mothers of hearing babies and discovered they were feeling exactly the same way! They quickly saw that deafness did not stand in anybody’s way and a can-do approach was what was necessary. The other members of Earsay were able to give much needed advice and support in the early stages. The charity also funded BSL classes for Heather’s parents, grandparents and godmothers, and has continued to assist with equipment, residentials and social events. The latter have given Heather a peer group and helped build her identity as a “normal” kid who happens to be deaf. She is equally comfortable with deaf people and hearing people and will switch her language to suit.
Paul joined the committee in 2011, first holding the roles of Honorary Secretary and then Chairman before taking the mantle of Honorary Treasurer.
Paul is married with three children; a daughter and two sons.
His eldest son, Jack, became deaf as a result of pneumococcal meningitis when he was 8 months old. Jack has a sensorineural moderate-profound hearing loss in his left ear and a dead right ear.
The family joined Earsay in 2007 as Jack, who was in mainstream schooling, had been wondering why it was only him who had hearing loss. Meeting other families of children with hearing loss has been a great support to Jack and the whole family.
Kerri joined the committee in 2012 and is on the Executive committee, primarily looking after marketing and publicity.
Kerri is married with two children. When her daughter was 3 years old,
her son Indie arrived extremely prematurely (15 weeks early at 25 weeks) and spent his first 3 months in the neonatal unit at St Thomas’ Hospital, London. Due to premature babies being at increased risk of hearing loss, it was investigated at an early stage, however, Indie wasn’t diagnosed with hearing loss in both ears until he was 2 and began wearing hearing aids.
The family joined Earsay around 2010 and found the charity to be friendly and great for support and advice. Indie has enjoyed many different social events with the Earsay community and made new friends, and Kerri is proud to volunteer her time on the committee to help others.
Pat is severely Deaf, Bilingual, using both speech and BSL. Pat has been on the executive Committee for around 25 years and brings with her the unique experiences of living with Deafness and specific skills in Music, BSL translation and more.
Gabriele joined the committee in 2011 and is currently on the Executive committee.
Gabriele is married with three children, two sons and a daughter.
Her eldest son, George, became deaf
as a result of prematurity. The family joined Earsay (then the Jersey Society for Deaf Children and Young Adults) in 2001 when George was diagnosed to be profoundly deaf. In 2002 he became the first child in Jersey to receive a cochlear implant. The implant enabled him to be schooled on island instead of boarding at a specialist school in the UK.
Since then, Gabriele has tirelessly campaigned for the support of deaf children and adults in Education, Further Education and other life situations. She hopes that her efforts will help to enable all deaf and hard of hearing people in Jersey to reach their potential and lead an independent and happy life.