Chelle: This is our 40th podcast! It’s been fun making them and seeing where they go. We’ve highlighted hearing loss and its related issues and strategies; spotlighted community members for inspiration, and will continue to do so.
I love the connections we’ve made.
This Past Year
- We hosted a free, monthly event called Talk About It Tuesday (TAIT) with human generated captions (CART) so everyone can participate.
- We’ve met some good people through TAIT and got to meet one attendee in person thanks to our travels to and from the SayWhatClub convention.
- We offered a free workshop before the holidays to help people Conquer Their Next Family Gathering.
- We’ve also had free workshops on Family and Self Advocacy for May’s Better Hearing and Speech Month.
- We tested sensitivity training for a business to clear up misconceptions about the Hard of Hearing. It was well received.
- We’ve given free presentations for hearing loss support groups on how to request CART and self advocacy.
- All our podcasts are free and accessible with captions, that’s a lot of work thanks to Julia. She makes sure all we do is accessible with captions. We want to lead the way with captions.
Lipreading Concepts Class
We started the Lipreading Concepts classes this year (new classes starting next week) which has already helped several people be more proactive with their communication. This is the only thing we charge for so far. It is a minimal charge, $50 for 8 one-hour classes. Soon we’ll have a Patreon channel going with extras from our podcasts.
Over the next year, I look forward to narrowing our focus down to self advocacy at a grassroots level. Teaching people how to communicate, how to get the accommodations they need. Reaching the Hard of Hearing as a whole to let them know there are a lot of accommodations available, and more of us need to request them so our communication needs are better known.
The Funding Question
This question popped up more than a few times this last year, why are we an LLC instead of a nonprofit? Because we want to do it our way. We didn’t want a board telling us what to do. We also didn’t want to be boxed in by bylaws so we went the LLC way. Even in nonprofits there are membership fees, convention fees, fundraisers. We could have gone the nonprofit route, we have years of experience with nonprofits between us. We could have paid ourselves that way too. Being an LLC is going against the current grain but it isn’t all that different.
We’ve bootstrapped the whole way through. We recently started some crowdfunding and some of you have already helped. Thank you! We want to go another year; then, another sharing what we have learned on our journeys so you don’t have to wait as long as we did to be more successful with hearing loss.
Happy Birthday to Us!
Michele: Can you believe it’s been a year?! Yes and no. Time is a great contradiction, passing slowly and at top speed all at once.
This past year has confirmed to us how hungry Hard of Hearing (HoH) people are for information that will help them live fully with hearing loss. We’ve helped people learn to be better self advocates and to find their confidence to speak up for themselves and their needs.
More work needed for HoH Accommodations
Speaking of needs, many have no idea what they need or what is available to them in the way of accommodation. Helping people with hearing loss define their needs has been a big part of what Chelle, Julia and I have focused on since last September.
At its heart, hearing loss is a communication barrier. Communication access, and the accommodations that provide it effectively, has been another big focus of ours. If the HoH want businesses and organizations that serve us to include us, the best way to educate them is to advocate and ask for what we need. I’ve been working hard on that in my own community in hospital and medical settings. I’ll be giving presentations on hospital communication access later this year.
Equal Access to CART
CART has been a big focus of Hearing Loss LIVE!, and that’s no surprise, as Julia is a captioner. With a profound hearing loss, and being a lifelong lipreader, CART is the most effective communication access accommodation for me and many others. We are working to help start a movement that will grow the CART industry—there is a shortage of CART providers—and to spread awareness among the HoH community, those who organize live events, and businesses. Many have no clue about how to request it or how to go about providing it for those of us who do not communicate via sign language. Quality, on-site, speech-to-text services should be available all across the country, not just in larger cities. We will continue to focus there, because over 95% of people with hearing loss use spoken language to communicate. Communication access keeps us connected! IT IS EVERYTHING!
“If all my possessions were taken from me with one exception, I would choose to keep the power of communication, for by it I would soon regain all the rest” ― Daniel Webster
We are Going to Dig In
Julia: I am hoping this is one of many anniversaries to come. There is still so much work ahead of us and I’m ready to dig in and get more folks in the KNOW!
Whether you’re new to hearing loss or an old pro—or maybe you are still in denial—there is something here for you, your family, your friends and your place of business. In fact, I think everyone should get in the KNOW! Before they need to know. I cannot stress enough how this has improved everything about my journey as a hearing partner.
Our goal will always be to give back to our HoH community and their hearing partners as much as possible but we need your help.
We have many ways you can help us:
Patreon: Get a look at some of our unseen videos. There are hours and hours of hilarious outtakes, serious discussion about hearing loss, thoughts about podcasting and more. Monthly content starts at $3 a month. That’s only $36 dollars a year.
Buy me a Coffee: Buy one or all of us a coffee! Like a specific blog or podcast? Want us to take on a subject? Let us know.
Join our Lipreading Concept Class: It’s only $50 dollars for eight weeks! This class is taught by Chelle, Michele and Julia. All three have years of experience with what lipreading is and what it is not. We believe the best way to take this class is online/in person, because there is always time to talk about current real life experiences, strategies and hearing loss. This class is built for hearing friends and family, too. Encourage them to get in the KNOW! about how lipreading and communication go hand in hand. Space is still available in all four of our classes starting September 7th.
Lipreading Concepts Class in Video
We also have a recorded version of our Lipreading Concepts class.This is for those who aren’t quite ready for group settings. Also, this is a great gift to share with a hearing friend or family member to help them learn more about hearing loss and lipreading.
Subscribe to our E-news: Our E Newsletter comes out twice a month. It’s chock-full of information and fun facts. It contains Zoom links for our events like Talk about it Tuesday. We share our newsletter list with no one.
Share a testimonial with us: Let us KNOW what Hearing Loss LIVE! means to you. Subscribe to all our content. And above all else: Share, Share Share. Share with your friends, your family, your support groups, your doctors, your coworkers and your employer.
Let’s get everyone in the KNOW!
If you enjoy our content and find it helpful, please consider donating so that we can reach more people with hearing loss to help them help themselves.
Watch our companion podcast on YouTube channel. Our podcasts available in audio format on BuzzSprout with a transcript. You can also find us on Spotify, iHeartRadio and other platforms.