Lauren was diagnosed as profoundly deaf soon after she was born, she had her first cochlear implant aged two and her second at six. 

Her Mum Jacqui who is also deaf explained: “We were devastated when we heard Lauren was deaf. Being deaf myself I grew up with limitations and some very negative experiences. It bought back many memories and I was determined that Lauren would not experience the same. I wanted her to have more opportunities than I had.

The family found out about the AVUK specialist family programme from a local deaf charity.

Lauren started on the early support play-based programme aged six months. At three she graduated with spoken language skills at a level expected for a hearing child of her age.

“AVUK helped our family in more ways than one, not only did the team at AVUK give us confidence and encouragement in what we were doing to get through the early years, but also helped us use the skills and knowledge to apply at home in order to continue the methods that they taught.

“Lauren has never let being deaf hold her back and AVUK also instilled in us that we should have high expectations for our child, “ Jacqui explained.

Age eight she starred in CBBC television drama, spoke at London City Hall aged 13, and the House of Commons in Westminster at 16 as well as addressing the Department for Education highlighting the importance of early support for deaf children. She has also spoken about deafness at school assemblies and supported fundraising efforts.

Lauren is now thriving with the same opportunities in life as her hearing peers, studying A Levels in English Language, Psychology and Philosophy at Haberdashers Girls’ School.

In November 2023 she became the first winner of the Claire Campbell Outstanding Achievement Award for a deaf child or young person with hearing loss who has gone above and beyond to demonstrate that deaf children can achieve their potential.

Lauren was nominated by her school for her “drive, motivation and dedication to helping others understand deafness and to help improve outcomes for all deaf children. She has a great passion for educating others about deafness and is also mentor for a deaf boy in the junior school who she is supporting in his transition into secondary school.”

On receiving her award Lauren said: “I feel privileged and honoured to have won this award, especially considering the amazing work others in this category have done to raise awareness for deaf children and young adults. My motivation to speak publicly comes from my belief in the importance of early educational intervention for deaf children so that they can fulfil their full potential at school and in life.”

Jacqui added: “Lauren continues to surprise us in so many ways of what she can achieve. And what makes us so incredibly proud is how proud she is of being deaf and how determined she is that it will not hold her back but drive her on to the best she can be and also help others see how deaf children can flourish and achieve their potential.”

 Jacqui - Lauren's Mum