My first connection to HLAA was through its annual Walk4Hearing program. It was a revelation for me to see that there were thousands of others who shared my experience of hearing loss and to feel the support of walking with family, friends, educators, and hearing health professionals.
What is most unique and effective about HLAA is that in addition to providing information and tools to help make hearing loss manageable, it also empowers you to advocate for yourself and millions of others. Working with dedicated and expert staff, HLAA volunteers have accomplished great things in making our communities more accessible.
I urge anyone with a connection to hearing loss to visit HLAA’s website and to join the largest and most effective consumer organization advocating on our behalf.
An organization that excels in fulfilling its mission of providing information, education, support and advocacy for people with hearing loss, HLAA is also unique in its approach. A relatively small, but highly effective staff in the national office provides leadership and support to thousands of members and volunteers in an extensive grassroots network of statewide associations and local chapters.
Most of us come to HLAA through our local chapters seeking help in coping with our hearing loss. Grateful for the knowledge and support we receive from those who share our experience as well as experts in the field, we become members and work in our communities to help others with hearing loss. Perhaps the greatest benefit is the sense of empowerment we experience through self-help and by engaging in outreach and advocacy.
One of the most unique aspects of HLAA is the Walk4Hearing program, the largest of its kind in the country. As we walk in 22 cities raising awareness and funds for hearing loss, we also partner with over 100 alliances representing organizations such as hospitals, schools and social programs for children with hearing loss, and colleges and universities. Alliances retain a portion of the funds their teams raise to support their own programs, expanding our reach and building a stronger more effective hearing loss community. The Walks enable us to meet new friends and celebrate all we have accomplished.
There are currently 48 million people in the United States with hearing loss and as the numbers continue to grow, HLAA’s leadership and support is needed more than ever. An increase in membership will help us meet this need. I am very fortunate to serve on the Board of Trustees and to work actively with my chapter and the Walk4Hearing program. Whether your relationship with hearing loss is personal or professional, I urge you to join HLAA and experience the benefits of affiliation with this wonderful organization.
Review from Guidestar
Hearing loss runs in my family, and the compromises that it inflicted on people I love had a painful impact on our ability to enjoy each other and live with well being. HLAA is the single most important resource that I've uncovered in over 30 years of searching for better ways to manage. I give HLAA the very highest recommendation and would urge any person struggling with hearing loss - either first hand or because a loved one is affected - to join the national organization and to find a local chapter.
"It saved my life." In my work as a long-time HLAA member and volunteer, this is the comment I often hear from people with hearing loss who discover the organization, often through a friend or colleague. I think there are several reasons why this response is such a common one, but the most important is the fact that HLAA offers such hope and reassurance. It is such a remarkable organization at every level. The national office is staffed by committed, intelligent hearing loss advocates and generates initiatives that make a real difference in terms of legislative advocacy and shaping hearing healthcare policy. Through local chapters, HLAA brings much needed information and support to individuals facing hearing loss and their families. I believe that HLAA is an essential resource for anyone struggling with the challenges presented by hearing loss.
When I joined HLAA in 1995 I was working full time, but struggling with communication issues during meetings. I had volume control on my phone, but knew nothing about any other assistive listening devices. HLAA provided the information I needed to remain employed and so much more. Thank you, HLAA!!!
People with hearing loss struggle to obtain and maintain employment. Employers struggle to assist them. HLAA brought the 2 together for a 3-hour Symposium at its Annual Convention in June. Hundreds of employers and workers with hearing loss engaged in a frank discussion of issues and solutions. HLAA is the first to ever sponsor this kind of activity and it is part of an on-going effort to open the world of communication and full participation in public life for people with hearing loss. HLAA also advocates at the national level for solutions that will better the lives of workers with hearing loss. Valerie Stafford-Mallis
I am a late-deafened adult who is still working. I lost my hearing during what should have been the peak years of my career. Had I known about the Hearing loss Association of America, I could have availed myself earlier of all the wonderful education, advocacy and support than I did. However, it is never too late. I am so grateful to be a part of HLAA. The education, advocacy, and support I have received by being a member in HLAA has enabled me to achieve and maintain competitive employment in the career of my choice. I am so grateful!
The Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) has empowered me to lead a more active lifestyle by teaching me how to communicate more effectively and how to be a better advocate, not only for myself, but for others in the community where I live affected by hearing loss.
The statistics are alarming. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, 20% of our population has some level of hearing loss—45 million people in the United States. In Sarasota, Florida, that translates into approximately 145,000 residents. I am fortunate to be part of a team that believes we can and will raise awareness about this “invisible condition” while improving people’s lives through education, support and the sharing of experiences. HLAA has given me the tools and resources to reach, educate and motivate these individuals to seek treatment.
Although hearing loss is called the “invisible condition”, I refuse to be invisible in my determination to raise awareness regarding the HLAA mission of education, information, advocacy and support for people with hearing loss. There is nothing more rewarding to me than to have someone who has struggled with hearing loss say: “You have made such a difference in my life”.
My mom had profound hearing loss from about the age of 45 years. My dad understood what she was going through but I really didn't get it. She got involved with Rocky and Amie and SHHH and her life improved dramatically. Then I lost my hearing and eventually was put on the HLAA national board. After the 2nd meeting several board members took me aside and told me I should go to NYU to be evaluated for a cochlear implant. I did this and shortly thereafter Dr. Thomas Roland implanted a cochlear on my left side. I feel so lucky to have gotten my life back and I owe it to HLAA.
While in the receiving line at my wedding my Mom realized she couldn't hear the names of people introduced to her. Her hearing continued to decline and she was fitted for stronger and stronger hearing aids bilaterally. Going to social events was difficult in spite of my father's translating much of what was being said. It got to the point that she didn't want to go out. Then my parents met Rocky and Ahmy Stone and attended the SHHH Conference in Chicago. Those two events were life changers for my mom. She learned to speak up for herself and started the first SHHH (later to be renamed HLAA) chapters in Winnetka, IL and Sarasota, FL. She also taught lip reading for over 35 years.
Thus when my hearing began to go I knew to ask for hearing aids. I received one in my right ear but was told that I was deaf in my left ear and a hearing aid would not help that ear and I was not a candidate for a cochlear implant. After asking for a cochlear implant for several years I was told by fellow HLAA trustees to get out of the state in which I live and go to New York. I now have a cochlear implant and have my life back.
I am a late-deafened adult. By that, I mean that I once heard typically and over the course of the years I lost my ability to hear. Because of the Hearing Loss Association of America and its caring members, I learned about hearing assistive technology and how to live well in spite of my hearing loss. Because of the education, information, advocacy, and support provided to me by these HLAA members, I found hearing-friendly workplaces, underwent bi-lateral cochlear implantation, auditory rehabilitation, and learned about assistive listening devices and more effective communication strategies. None of that would have happened had the first Hearing Loss Association of America member not reached out to me. My story is not unique. This organization changes lives!
HLAA is making a major difference to the lives of persons with hearing loss through its outreach activities and work informing policy makers. Many of the benefits that are available that enhance everyone's ability to communicate and stay actively engaged in the community are made possible partly by the efforts of HLAA. It also provides a wonderful network of individuals who can share their experiences and learn from each other.
As a health professional working with older adults with hearing loss I became aware of the extremely valuable role played by the HLAA through its support of individuals with hearing loss, its ability to push for legislative reform that supports persons with hearing loss, and its support of educational programs and opportunities. It's a wonderful advocate and has a very strong commitment to promoting access to health care services for persons with hearing loss at any age.
Review from Guidestar
I have been a member of the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) for over 10 years and I continue to be amazed how much the HLAA has done to provide people with information about hearing loss, as well as offering assistance, guidance, and support. HLAA members are active, energetic, and very appreciative of being able to seek and receive help and advice from the HLAA. As an audiologist, I am amazed with the indomitable spirit of members who have hearing loss, as well as their wonderful efforts to help others. The HLAA staff is incredible, always welcome to work late (often including weekends), to offer help to people who need information and assistance, to develop and launch new programs that will be helpful for people with hearing loss, and to assist the Board of Trustees. As an audiologist, I have gained tremendous information about living with hearing loss, far more than I received in college as an audiology. I am grateful to be a member of the HLAA and to be serving on the HLAA Board of Trustees. The HLAA has done so much to help people and my most important wish for the HLAA is that the vast majority of people with hearing loss will be a part of the HLAA. They will benefit significantly, resulting in far greater quality of life, happiness, and health.