Auditory Verbal UK is  delighted to have won The Children and Young People Now Early Years Award for our specialist play-based, family-centred programme of Auditory Verbal therapy, supporting deaf babies and children learn to listen and talk.

AVUK’s programme was described as “established with bold ambitions” by judges of the award, which recognises  the initiative that has done the most to improve the life chances of children under five.

Chief Executive Anita Grover said: “We are so pleased that the work and dedication of our team at AVUK supporting deaf babies and children across the UK to learn to listen and talk with Auditory Verbal therapy has been recognised by The Children and Young People Now Awards. Through our family programme, we are proud to have supported more than 150 families with young deaf children in the last 12 months alone.”

The awards also saw 10-year-old Orson Grimer was High Commended for the Children’s Achievement Award.

Together with his family Orson - who was born deaf and learnt to listen and talk with Auditory Verba therapy - has championed AVUK’s #HearUsNow campaign. He has delivered a letter to the Prime Minister at Number 10 Downing Street and met cross-party MPs at the House of Commons to explain how Auditory Verbal therapy transformed his life allowing him to attend mainstream school and enjoy all the other opportunities hearing children of his age can.

Anita Grover added, “It is brilliant that the amazing efforts and commitment of Orson and his family to support more deaf babies and children have access to early and effective support has also been recognised. We are so proud of you Orson.”

Orson also met with Malala Yousafzai, activist, UN Messenger of Peace and the youngest person ever awarded the Nobel Peace Prize earlier this year and shared his story and work advocating for other children and young people with hearing loss. His campaigning work is in addition to more than £12,000 raised by his family, friends and school to support more deaf children like him learn to listen and speak with Auditory Verbal therapy.

Orson  said: “I’m so excited to have been recognised in these awards and I hope that this will make more people, especially the Government, listen and take action so more deaf babies and children can have the chances and opportunities I have had.”

His Mum Avril added: “It is fantastic that the work of AVUK has been recognised in these awards and amazing that Orson has been highly commended. Orson is now flourishing and enjoys all the things that his hearing friends do. He talks proudly about being deaf and how he can talk like his friends thanks to AVUK. Without the charity this would not be possible and their support through the Auditory Verbal therapy programme and beyond has been truly life changing for the whole family.

“We know Orson is one of the lucky ones to have had access to Auditory Verbal therapy and our campaigning is by no means over. There still needs to be a commitment from the Government to fund Auditory Verbal therapy so that every family with a young deaf child has the opportunity to access this specialist therapy and have the same opportunities that Orson has.”