Noah T's story

11th November 2014

Noah, 7, contracted meningitis when he was just 16 months old. The disease left him fighting for his life. Thankfully, Noah won his battle, but as a cruel reminder of the pain his family had to endure, meningitis left him profoundly deaf

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Fighting for his life

Noah had an operation to have cochlear implants fitted to help him ‘hear again’, but despite this, his speech and communication still suffered. Terrified about how this was going to impact Noah’s future – his development, school life, his happiness – Noah’s mum, Donna, called Meningitis Now. 

We advised her of the amazing benefits of Auditory Verbal Therapy (AVT). Donna had never heard of AVT and was pleased that there may be something that could help her little boy. She went on to apply for a financial support grant from Meningitis Now to fund the sessions, which took place at Auditory Verbal UK – a charity that we now work closely with, through our Partnership Programme.

The results, for Noah, have been fantastic. AVT has helped him learn to talk and understand through his cochlear implants. These implants directly introduce a limited range of noise into Noah’s auditory nerve. AVT helps Noah translate this as language and surrounding noises with the help of his parents and other family members who have also trained in AVT to help him overcome the debilitating impact of his deafness.

Made a real difference

Donna says: “This has made a real difference to our family and Noah now listens well and talks using five word phrases. We are so proud of him and incredibly thankful for the financial support that we received from Meningitis Now, which enabled us to access this life-changing therapy.”

To complement the learning Noah has achieved through this therapy, we have also been funding reading and behavioural management sessions for him. Like many other children who have had meningitis, Noah suffers with behavioural issues, in addition to hearing, eyesight, and balance difficulties. Because of meningitis, Noah is behind with his literacy skills for his age which causes him distress and has resulted in aggressive behaviour problems. 

He gets frustrated not being able to do the same as his peers. The sessions he attends help to facilitate a better understanding of the things Noah finds difficult or stressful, in turn, helping to reduce his feelings of anxiety and enabling him to focus on, and develop, his reading skills. Noah is making good progress and with improved literacy skills through these sessions, his quality of life will continue to improve.

Because of meningitis, living with disabilities will create a lifelong challenge for children like Noah. We are determined that, with our support, they will get the best possible chances in life to achieve to their fullest potential.


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