A member of staff at a local opticians has completed a sign language course so they can communicate more effectively with hard of hearing and deaf customers.
Natalie Kennedy, dispensing consultant at Specsavers in Kirkintilloch, joined a ‘class’ of 14 Specsavers employees to build their knowledge of the impact of living with a hearing defect while improving communication skills with customers who experience difficulties with their hearing or complete deafness in store.
They have now completed an official Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) ‘Introduction to Sign Language’ course and have received a full accreditation in sing language.
Supported by Glasgow Clyde College and funded via the Scottish Apprenticeship Levy, the group of Specsavers volunteers expressed a keen interest in learning sign language as part of their day-to-day roles in store.
Kyle Bettley, senior lecturer at the college, specialises in British Sign Language and delivered the course to Specsavers staff.
He says: “I’ve been blown away with the enthusiasm of the Specsavers staff and how quickly they developed their signing skills.
“The course is a great opportunity to increase deaf awareness in partnership with a company that is proactively seeking to enable people living with hearing difficulties, and help them to have a positive experience in its stores.
“Working with the team has been an absolute pleasure and it was fantastic to watch them all graduate upon completion of the course.”
Added Neil Drain, store director at Specsavers in Kirkintilloch: “We are delighted Natalie had the opportunity to take part in this fantastic ddedourse and we are looking forward to rolling the sign language skills out in store.”