Name: Erica Jones
Job: I work for Deafness Support Network as a Project Worker (CIN) / Fundraiser
Where were you born: Shrewsbury
Where do you live now: Chester
Education: St David’s High School in Saltney, West Cheshire College (British Sign Language all the way to Level 6) and Mid Cheshire College (Teaching Assistant Level 3)
Family life (Married? Children?): Three, almost all grown up, gorgeous children and a very handsome partner
I usually get up as late as I can get away with - my children are older so they sort themselves out.
I come round with a cup of coffee and a few attempts of Wood Puzzle (which I am rubbish at, top score 3442) with BBC Breakfast on the television.
I have two roles in Deafness Support Network: project worker for the I’m Hear Project where I visit families of children with a hearing loss and look at communication in the home and any outside clubs the child maybe involved with, and fundraising!
So every day is different which I love.
A typical day for the project can be preparation for a home visit, making resources to support the family learn basic sign language, or putting together deaf awareness information.
Each session is home based and tailored around that family’s needs.
All of my families are lovely and I really enjoy visiting each one.
Some days I might visit a club such as gymnastics, scouts or after-school club to talk about deaf awareness and how to improve access for any child with a hearing loss.
I have a real passion for improving life chances for children with a hearing loss so this job certainly makes me feel I am making a difference.
My fundraising role is very exciting.
My office-based time is spent planning our next fundraising activity.
We’ve done sky diving (I actually did that one myself!), a boat cruise, a fantastic football tournament, sponsored walk - the list goes on!
I spend a lot of time writing to some very generous organisations and companies who support us with raffle prizes and donations.
I love receiving post, it means we have something to raffle off.
My time out of the office is spent delivering Deaf Awareness sessions for a donation, (this can be schools, clubs, organisations), getting out and meeting the people who are fundraising on our behalf, bag packing, and soon to come, signing stories at Storyhouse in Chester.
So after my very fun packed day, I pop to the supermarket to pick up tea, (I’m not very organised with that) and go home to my lovely family and relax, if I’m lucky.
I do communication support at the Pheonix LGBT Youth Group one night a week and seem to spend most other evenings picking my youngest daughter up from her job in Chester.
Life and work are busy but very enjoyable.
What do you wear to do your job? Depends on what I’m doing that day and how I’m feeling. I like to think smart casual.
What is the favourite part of your job? Seeing the difference made in deaf children’s lives when they have the right support.
What is the least favourite part of your job? Paperwork! I am easily distracted from paperwork.
What would be your dream job if you weren’t doing what you do now? I love anything to do with improving children’s quality of life and life chances so maybe this is my dream job
How do you relax when you are not working? Gardening and sorting out my football team, Chester Deaf Football Club. We are a football team for children with a hearing loss and train every week on Saturday at Goals in Chester. We have three fantastic coaches, Mike Ritchie, Paul Southall and Kym Clearie. (Still looking for new players!) Also, spending time with my children when we are all in the same location. It can be difficult with one off at university and two working.
What is your favourite film? The Green Mile (or anything with Tom Hanks in it really)
What is your favourite book? The Help by Kathryn Stockett, it’s a proper page turner.
What is your favourite song? Anything from Mumford and Sons. It’s my singalong car music when I’ve had a stressful day - but it has to be loud! (Not recommended as it can damage your hearing)
If a film was made of your life, who would you like to play you? Patricia Heaton but played as the character of Frankie Heck (The Middle) as I feel she conveys my life well
Have you had your 15 minutes of fame yet? Yes! We made an appeal video for Children in Need who fund our I’m Hear Project which was aired on the North West News during CIN appeal week. We got to meet Carol Lowe and Roger Johnson! My mum loves Roger so I took her along to make her happy.
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