Children and Young People Now AwardsJames Curtis, a profoundly deaf 15 year-old, was recognised for his outstanding achievement at November’s Children and Young People Now Awards at the Hurlingham Club in London. He received the award for his contribution to us and inspiring other deaf children to know that they can achieve anything.

James Curtis, our Young Ambassador, won the Children’s Achievement Award. This is the second nomination for James this year. He was Highly Commended as the Young Person of the Year at The Shine a Light Awards 2015 sponsored by the educational publisher, Pearson. Pearson is actively engaged in the speech and language communication needs sector and joined James Curtis, his family and representatives from Auditory VerbalUK at the ceremony.

Born with profound bilateral hearing loss, James, is an inspirational advocate for deaf children and young people. After three years attending Auditory VerbalUK as a young child, James listens and talks on a par with his hearing peers and excels at mainstream school. As a young ambassador at Auditory VerbalUK, James passionately shares his personal experiences to increase awareness of deafness, challenge stereotypes and raise the expectations of what deaf children can achieve. From speaking at schools to presenting at large fundraising events, James continues to demonstrate that there are no barriers to what deaf children can accomplish.

James Curtis said: “I am so honoured to win the Children’s Achievement Award at the Children and Young People Now Awards 2015. It would be easy for me to take for granted that I am able to communicate with everyone I meet, as I was very young when I had my cochlear implants and learnt to listen with the help of Auditory VerbalUK (AVUK). But it was a great deal of commitment and work of family and teachers at AVUK that helped me, and I was incredibly fortunate for that. I therefore want to thank them for all their assistance.”

“Having the ability to fully communicate with the world around me has enabled me to achieve so much and I am now in an amazing position to show others what is possible and help them listen and speak just like me, and plan to carry on advocating the importance of auditory verbal therapy for deaf children everywhere. Thank you.”

Speaking about the success, our CEO Anita Grover said: “It is fantastic to see our profoundly deaf young Ambassador, James Curtis, winning the Children’s Achievement award. He is an inspirational young man. We are very proud of the achievements of all the children that we have worked with at Auditory VerbalUK. Like James, they are challenging perceptions of what deaf children can do and demonstrating every day that they can do all the things that their hearing peers can. We are also delighted to have received a highly commended award for our early intervention programme and thrilled that our work at Auditory VerbalUK has been recognised by a prestigious judging panel.”