Macy’s powerful message

WILLIAMSTOWN’S Macy Lane might have trouble hearing, but she’s not letting her sensory loss hold her back.

The 10-year-old St Jakobi Lutheran School student, who was born with profound deafness and wears cochlear implants, was selected to speak in front of Australia’s most powerful leaders in Canberra next week.

She hopes to tackle the stigma surrounding hearing loss when she represents Cora Barclay Centre at the Cochlear Implant ‘Power of Speech’ event at Parliament House on Tuesday.

“I’ll be speaking about my hopes and dreams for the future, and how I think I’m going to achieve those goals,” Macy said.

“Deaf people are no different, and we can achieve the same goals as everyone else.

“I like to see myself as everyone else – I’m just a little bit different.”

It will be the second time Macy will address politicians at Parliament House, having been selected to speak at the National Press Club three years ago.

“I get a little scared when speaking, but I do enjoy it,” Macy said.

Macy, along with her brother Soul, eight, were born with congenital hearing loss, with their parents Ryan and Lauren carrying the defective gene, Connexin 26.

Despite suffering profound deafness, the siblings can hear and speak perfectly, thanks to cochlear implants and ongoing therapy at Adelaide’s Cora Barclay Centre.

“At the beginning it was pretty devastating, knowing they might have hearing loss,” Lauren said.

“But now seeing how everything has turned out, we are not scared.

“They can do anything like anybody else.

“We are pretty grateful for the technology.”

Ryan said he was proud of seeing Macy working towards the life she wants, and not letting her hearing impairment hold her back.

“A lot of people assume it’s only mild deafness, but if you took the implants off, she’s completely deaf,” he said.

“Her confidence to be able to speak in front of others is amazing.

“She’s very sporty, academic and social.”

Laura Tilley

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Laura Tilley joined The Bunyip team after completing her Bachelor of Journalism at the University of South Australia and working at sister newspaper The Murray Pioneer, Renmark, recently. Laura undertook a student exchange to the UK, where she studied journalism courses at the University of Worcester. She completed several stints across different media outlets where she found her passion for journalism.

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