Hundreds of clear masks have been donated to people across the North East to help people with hearing difficulties

Report by Tom Barton

We've all got used to wearing face coverings when we go indoors in a public place. But for people with difficulty hearing - they can cause a real problem.

Now, thanks to a friendship between a mum from County Durham and an old schoolmate who lives in Bangladesh, hundreds of clear masks have been donated to people across the North East. 

For children at school, this simple thing can make their lives so much easier, and the clear window in their teachers masks means they can now follow lessons much more easily.8 year old Ciaran from County Durham, with the help of his teacher, explains the difference it makes:

It was with the help of Jo Milne...who shot to worldwide fame after this video of her hearing for the first time went viral six years ago.

They were donated by Jo’s school friend Amina, who now lives in Bangladesh. The pair worked together on a charity project with deaf children in Bangladesh in 2016. Now Amina wanted to do something to help kids where she grew up.

Amina said: "With me being a Geordie and a Bangladeshi, it was very nice to help the North East. Because, myself, I was born in Jesmond. I was born in the General Hospital. And my first house was in Jesmond. So I'm very happy that the masks have gone to Jesmond."

"To have that connection there. Lovely."Amina sent more than 500 masks to Jo - who had no idea they were on their way:“Well, wow. Because when I opened the box I had no idea they were going to arrive. But I knew straight away what they were. I knew that they had come from her. But it was also a very powerful reminder that we're all in this together. And it's incredible that we're always better off when we support one another. And I never never lose faith in the human spirit.”Along with the Northern Counties School, Jo has shared the masks among the deaf community in the North East and with care homes. A gift from 5,000 miles away making a massive difference to people here in the north east.