Listen up! A Shropshire woman is organising hearing screenings for local businesses in a bid to run-up donations in support of her first London Marathon.
Steff Henson, sales director at award-winning Shrewsbury-based website and software developer Six Ticks, will be taking part in the marathon on April 26 to raise money for Signal, the leading deaf and hard of hearing charity - a major challenge as she only took up running two years ago!
Signal is a charity Steff feels particularly passionate about as she experienced partial deafness as a child.
And as part of her fundraising efforts she is asking local businesses to make a donation in exchange for hearing screenings for employees.
“Signal is a wonderful charity helping people in the UK and abroad and I want to raise as much money as I can. The marathon is a bit of a daunting prospect but the thought of being able to help Signal is a powerful incentive,” she said.
“A large part of my fundraising centres on raising awareness of how important it is to have a hearing screening and as part of the marathon build-up we are offering the opportunity of Signal assessors going out to businesses, providing screenings for staff in return for a donation.
“Any firm wanting to take part can get in touch with me to book, an assessor then goes out to their offices to carry out the screenings - it’s that easy, it’s all for a good cause and it’s a brilliant way to help with staff wellbeing.
“It’s incredible to think that here in Shropshire one in five people suffers from hearing loss, a higher figure than the national average, and it takes 10 years for people to address the problem from its onset.
In a bid to shorten the 10-year timescale, Signal set about raising the profile of hearing health by launching its Lottery funded hearing screening programme - a simple process that can be carried out in any quiet room with results known there and then.
“Hearing loss is something particularly close to my heart, I was half deaf as a child, couldn’t balance on my bike until I was nine and really struggled at school, sort of adapting to the situation by lip-reading,” adds Steff.
“So I am fully aware of the problems people face through deafness.
“Becoming hard of hearing can also be a gradual thing and people may not even be aware they have an issue. This is why it’s important to have screenings which can highlight any problems and why I would call on local businesses to get involved with the Signal initiative.
“Running the marathon will be the hardest thing I have ever done but it will all be worth it if we can raise some much-needed money to support an amazing charity.”
To book a Signal hearing screening in return for a donation, call Steff on 01743 627007 or email https://www.linkedin.com/in/stephanie-henson-1b91bb49/
To sponsor Steff, visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/stephanie-henson2
For more about the Signal charity, visit https://www.signal.org.uk/