|Posted on:||Friday, 2nd September, 2016|
Actress and CBM Champion Trudie Goodwin (The Bill, Emmerdale) spoke to Woman magazine, the UK’s biggest selling women’s lifestyle magazine, about living with hearing loss and her support for CBM.
“I was just seven when I started having problems. I’d get terrible earaches that got worse in the cold, and I struggled to hear my parents if they called me to come downstairs for dinner.”
“By the time I was nine, I had to move to the front of the class to hear the teacher better. But hearing tests proved inconclusive. Fortunately, over the next few years my hearing didn’t deteriorate any further and after leaving school I started working as an actress.”
After an accident while windsurfing on holiday, Trudie’s hearing loss became worse, sometimes making it difficult for her to hear other actors during filming. Her own experience made her particularly sensitive to the difficulties faced by people with disabilities in developing countries.
While Trudie and others with hearing problems in the UK receive hearing aids for free on the NHS, for the 360 million people living with disabling hearing loss across the world, 89% live in developing countries, where deafness has a devastating impact due to a lack of services and equipment.
“In 2006, I heard about the Christian Blind Mission (CBM) and their work in developing countries.I knew the devastating and isolating impact hearing loss can have, so I took six months off from The Bill and worked with medics in Nigeria”, she explains. Seeing CBM’s work on the ground was a life-changing experience for the actress, who has supported CBM since then.
Trudie is keen to encourage discussion of disability – both in the UK and in the world’s poorest communities.
“In 2014 I got a new pair of aids that were so discreet you couldn’t see them in the ear at all and I could turn the volume up or down with my mobile phone.”
“But while the gadgets are only getting better, people are still too embarrassed to talk about hearing loss. I’m determined to squash that stigma. No one should feel isolated and alone – ever.”