“Initially we were quite intimidated as a family that we would have to learn ASL in order to communicate with our newborn son. With the help of IDHHC services we have been able to overcome that nervousness and learn ASL. [Our teacher] has taken the time to understand us as a family and learn about our learning goals and has customized how we learn ASL. Above all, she has made it a lot of fun too.”
~ Victoria-based family of a deaf one year old
“Your organization is a Godsend for people like me. You guys are doing an excellent job. Pease keep up the good work. I really enjoyed the experience of having been treated as a valued customer. Thank you all again for the pleasant experience and service.”
~ Sound of Change client
“I just wanted to be here today to tell you how amazing this is for our family” (son says). “The fact that Mom and I can now talk on the phone and stay connected is worth gold to us – you cannot imagine how grateful we all are for what you have given to our family”.
~ Sound of Change family member
Hearing Loss is on the Rise
According to STATS Canada, Hearing loss is the fastest growing, and one of the most prevalent, chronic conditions facing Canadians today. This trend is certainly reflected in our numbers with a 456% increase in clients requiring hearing aids/adaptive devices over last year.
“Our ASL teacher exceeded all of our expectations. Her help has drastically improved our communication ability…”
~ Deafened adult, Nanaimo
“Thank you so much…I feel encouraged and excited to carry on. This collaboration feels very positive…”
~ VIU Disability Services Staff, Nanaimo
“I am fortunate to work with a community of interpreters at IDHHC who continually strive to provide the very best interpretations for the Deaf, hard of hearing and Deafblind community here on the Island. Every day I am inspired by their commitment to access, professional development and professionalism. Interpreters are engaged in everything from mentoring
newer interpreters, taking additional screenings, volunteering for WAVLI committees, to organizing and hosting interpreter meetings. Their commitment and passion for interpreting is evident and I am grateful to work alongside them.”
~ Nicole Pedneault, Registered Sign Language Interpreter
“I was so pleased with all of the support that I have gotten from the Island Deaf and Hard of Hearing, I was almost in tears. I wanted to thank the Island Deaf and Hard of Hearing for such an amazing job and for being able to help me. Otherwise I would still be unable to hear and probably jobless.”
“Since joining the group I have trained myself to use my hearing aid more ……. and I am finding that I am now getting more benefit from having one.”
“Probably the greatest challenge for hard-of-hearing seniors, their families and friends is that decades-old patterns of communication and activity are no longer successful or appropriate. That means personal loss for everyone. Everyone involved must change and adapt whether they like it or not and unfortunately, most people have no idea how to do that. Until we attended IDHHC classes, we had no guidance or help with these significant life adjustments.”
Strong inclusive communities built on equal access and empowered individuals.
“Before attending the ……. classes, I was often disappointed and upset because my expectations were too high. In the class, I learned more reasonable and realistic expectations and gained needed perspective.”
“I am very thankful and very grateful to have had this opportunity to have access to the excellent services offered. Hearing aids, speechreading, one-on-one information sessions, and the technical devices that will be of assistance to me will make a huge difference in my life! Also, the instructor is very dedicated and caring for people who are hard of hearing. She had such patience which puts everyone at ease.”
“For the first time I truly understood everything and actually laughed a lot, to the surprise of some Councillor’s who, I think, wondered if I knew how to laugh. Ha! Previously I missed a lot of the banter, the long pauses, the funny comments, etc.
I just cannot express how different the meeting last night was for me. Even though the captioning is so incredibly helpful, to fill in the blanks that I miss while lip-reading, it is still in English which is always a challenge for me. So, even though I understood so much more with captioning there were so many little things that were not captioned (ie: the little side jokes, bantering).
While my ASL is atrocious, due to lack of someone to sign with (all of my kids are hearies), I understand it and it was such a relaxing meeting and I felt more a part of the meeting; as though I were in on all of the little inside jokes going on. I do not know the right words but it was just awesome!!!
~ Rebecca Johnson, Chief Financial Officer for the City of Colwood, commenting on her experience having an ASL Interpreter for her City Council meetings. She had previously been struggling during meetings on her own, until she discovered that ASL Interpreting was the solution!