LinkUp Online brings together a small group of up to eight people via a secure online platform. There is a set format to our sessions, but this is driven by the areas of support you identify to us.
The group facilitators, volunteers and participants involved in the session will work together beforehand, and in the early part of the course, to agree what topics or issues should be addressed in line with your needs.
How is the LinkUp managed?
Once you have registered your interest in attending a LinkUp Online, our friendly team will be in touch to assess your needs. We will offer insight to how our sessions will work using your laptop or computer during a personalised 1-1 session.
This will help us assess whether your equipment and broadband will enable you to get the most from the sessions, and reassure you about any stress or anxiety you may have about your computer skills stopping you from joining our group.
Similar to our LinkUp Groups, a LinkUp Online is led by up to two experienced facilitators who have personal experience or understanding of hearing loss. One will have hearing loss themselves and so will have practical experience of managing the daily challenges that brings; the other will have a personal understanding of the frustrations hearing loss brings to the family or to other close relationships. (For smaller break-out groups, the session may be led by one facilitator.)
In addition to this, our sessions will be supported by up to two event support volunteers who all have personal experience of hearing loss in one way or another. Their role is to make sure the sessions run smoothly, from a personal and technical point of view, and to also share their own personal experiences of hearing loss and the solutions they have found for the problems they have encountered.
How long does a LinkUp Online last?
LinkUp Online sessions run over two consecutive days. We host a morning and afternoon session with ‘eye-breaks’ and longer breaks built in. There is also a longer break for lunch.
How does communication work? During the sessions, we provide speech to text reporting (whereby everything that is said is typed in real-time and displayed on a screen) so that everyone can follow what is being said. During small group work, at a minimum, we will utilise closed captions subtitling provided by our online platform.
The most important thing to remember is that everyone is in the same boat, so everyone understands and looks out for each other. You may feel deeply anxious that this will be too tiring, or that you will be left out of the conversation. We can assure that this is one place where good communication is practised, and everyone is included.
How much does it cost?
The cost of the sessions is free and currently covered by voluntary donations and funding from grant providers.
When do LinkUp Online sessions take place?
Sessions normally take place on a weekday, however we do offer weekend LinkUp Online dates. If you complete our LinkUp webform, we will advise you of our next available date.
How do I apply for a LinkUp Online?
To add your name to the waiting list please complete this short form and we will get in touch with you soon. If you would like to know more before starting the application process, you can contact us via our Helpdesk or email email@example.com