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Talking newspaper calls for volunteers

Staff reporter

Staff reporter

A call for extra volunteers is being made by a charity which produces an audio version of the Advertiser which provides a ‘contact lifeline’ for people no longer able to read their local paper.

The Maidenhead and District Talking Newspaper Association records a weekly version of the Advertiser for those  with visual impairments or disabilities which make reading or holding it too difficult.

Each week one of the charity’s reading teams and sound engineers records the news from that week’s Advertiser. Other volunteers then duplicate the recording onto USB memory sticks and send them out to the service’s users who listen to them on players provided by the charity. The entire service is free of charge.

Talking Newspaper chairwoman Diane Hayes said: “It’s extremely rewarding and great fun. And the listeners are so grateful to have this link to the local news that they otherwise would not have. Many describe the contact it provides as a lifeline.”

The charity needs volunteers in all areas, including help with administration, sound recording and reading.

No experience is needed for sound engineers as full training is given and all the equipment is provided, although a good knowledge of computers is required.

Vacancies also exist for reading teams made up of about four people, one or two of whom will also choose which stories to read from the paper. Again, full training is given and groups record the Advertiser two or three times every six months.

Diane added: “Rather than assemble teams from individual volunteers it’s nice to have a group who already know each other and who live in the same area.

“It’s social, enjoyable and a very worthy cause that makes a huge difference to the lives of our listeners.”

To find out more about volunteering for the charity please call Diane on 01628 631259.


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