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2021 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Hearing Loss Association of America

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Civil Rights, Social Action & Advocacy, Ear & Throat Diseases, Education, Health, Health Care

Mission: The mission of HLAA is to open the world of communication to people with hearing loss by providing information, education, support and advocacy. HLAA is the nation’s leading organization representing people with hearing loss. Hearing loss is the third largest public health issue after heart disease and arthritis. 48 million (20 percent) Americans have some degree of hearing loss.

Target demographics: people with hearing loss

Direct beneficiaries per year: Thousands of people with hearing loss!

Geographic areas served: the United States

Programs: Chapters and support groups; the HLAA Convention which offers educational workshops and more, all communication accessible with the use of hearing loops and real-time captioning; and the Walk4Hearing, held in cities across the country in the spring and fall (funds raised go to support programs for people with hearing loss).

Community Stories

133 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I first discovered HLAA in the 1980's. Back then it was called SHHH(Self Help for Hard of Hearing people). What I found was a local group of people just like me! Yea!! Over the years HLAA has grown and so have I. HLAA taught me how to advocate for my rights and gave me the confidence to become a leader within my HLAA group/Chapter. It made me feel like I wasn't doing this "hearing loss" all by myself. These people "got" me. They helped me learn positive communication strategies and practice using those strategies. HLAA didn't just help me; it prepared me to help others,too. Today I help others overcome the stigma attached to hearing loss by speaking out in public venues and using social media to bring information and hope to others who are struggling with hearing loss. HLAA meetings are still an important part of my life. Just like the very first meeting I attended almost three decades age... they still "get"me.

Comments ( 1 )

HLAA-Development Thank you, cooeyc, for sharing your story, and for embracing the self-help philosophy which encourages helping others.

Carla McLain T.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have so much respect for the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) as a true positive influence on the lives of people coping with hearing loss. The political activism on a national and local basis help all of us to stand up for effective communications, to be involved instead of sidelined, and to be productive in all walks of life. We save so much while we encourage, share resources, and information about technolgy to enable instead of just acknowledge the disabled. We can and do work with hearing loss, help others with hearing loss, and make life better while living with hearing loss.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Hearing Loss Association of America is a non-profit founded by a gentleman in the CIA who was losing his hearing. He founded a group that could offer support, information, advocacy, and empowerment to live well with hearing loss. Through the local chapter I found friends and the resources I needed to seek a cochlear implant when hearing aids no longer helped. The yearly convention is a powerhouse of technology and information. The training programs are cutting edge to help us continue to share and help others grow. I was fortunate to be accepted in the Network of Consumer Hearing Technology Trainers in 2016. I trained online, attended a workshop in Maryland, and gave presentations in my community/state to share the information. It was a wonderful experience that continues today. We celebrate together in a larger community with Hands and Voices families, Student of Audiology and professionals to do a Walk4Hearing every year. It raises funds for local non-profits as alliances with the HLAA Walk4Hearing so that we reap the benefits of the fundraising locally and nationally.

Board Member

Rating: 5

In 2014 I decided since I had some spare time I wanted to give back to my community. I met an old friend with hearing loss for lunch who worked at NTID and she said to go meet a friend of her mothers at one of the evening HLAA programs.

The rest has been history. I was roped in for a great cause that has become quite dear to my heart. It was great to know I wasn’t the only one with hearing loss and that I wasn’t alone. Not only did I have so much to offer and help other with hearing loss…I too have learned so much. I eventually joined the board of directors of my chapter and not so long after became President of one of the most active chapters in the United States. We are all one huge group of friends having a great time volunteering and doing what we can to help others with hearing loss.

One experience that I remember vividly was when I was volunteering at our Demo Center and I set up a visitor with a device so he could hear the television better at home. He had tears coming down his eyes because he hasn’t been able to hear the tv well for so long. Right there is why I do what I do. There is so much that should have been done yesterday but either way I am confidant HLAA will make a brighter tomorrow for this with hearing loss.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This has been an eventful year for the NYC HLAA chapter. Amid the horrors of a pandemic that was devastating the entire world, we were faced with the impossibility of holding our meetings in the church basement. But we have persisted and learned a great deal. At our meetings, which are now all virtual, prominent scientists have educated us about “hidden hearing loss,” balance problems, cochlear implants, and the genetics of hearing loss. We have learned about the psychological challenges posed by hearing loss, about our rights under the ADA, and the prospects for over-the-counter hearing aids. Betty Hauck has shared her journey as a professional musician with hearing loss, and our members have shared their own stories about the challenges of the pandemic.

This year we awarded the first annual Albert B. Chen Scholarship to a high school senior from NYC with hearing loss. Mr. Chen, who has a profound hearing loss, hopes to inspire younger generations to give back to the hearing loss community at some point in the future. This $5,000 scholarship for high school seniors with hearing loss is to be used toward the pursuit of a college degree.

The HLAA has also been in the forefront of advocacy efforts to help us face many challenges. The NYC chapter has advocated at hospitals for the use of captioned devices, clear masks, and hearing loops. When Zoom isn’t captioned, I place my iPhone next to my computer and use the Otter app to transcribe speech to text. But without HLAA I might never have learned about Google Meet, Otter and other things that have helped me live a full life despite my hearing loss.





Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

I first became aware of my hearing loss in 1992. Over the course of the past twenty-six years, my mild loss has progressed to a severe loss. Fortunately, there have been many changes in technology and in public accommodations during that time that have helped offset the effects of my loss. My awareness of these improvements has expanded rapidly in the last two years, as a direct result of my joining HLAA. While attending meetings, I have learned about devices that allow me to converse with my wife in noisy restaurants and to stream audio from airplane movies and tv shows directly to my hearing aids. My ability to enjoy movies and live theater is a direct result of HLAA’s advocacy for the installation of hearing loops in many theaters and concert halls, as well as its advocacy for captioned performances of Broadway shows, and captioning devices at most NYC movie houses. HLAA has also become an important part of my life as a source of support. At meetings, I have made friends who share the challenges of hearing loss.

Ed O.1

Donor

Rating: 5

HLAA organizes a Walk4Hearing in Chicago every year. I've been to every one for ten years. The walks are FUN. They have lots of entertainment for children. Pets are encouraged.

Beyond being a lot of fun, it's a great way to raise awareness about hearing loss and to raise funds for the best organization around focused on advocating accommodations for those with hearing loss.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

They've been advocating for hearing loss for 20 years, maybe more. They have some amazing people who work tirelessly. I was impressed with how quickly and effectively they changed their organization in response to COVID-19.

Susana A.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As I was losing my hearing in my early 20’s I had no friends or family members who I could relate with my hearing issues. I wish I would have known that there are groups who can support you when you have questions and share stories of their own hearing loss experience. This HLAA nonprofit organization is giving the opportunity to help us with support and guidance for our hearing loss problems. They share wonderful stories and great ideas to help hearing disabilities. Love this organization and glad to be able to count on this HLAA anytime just by looking their page and have many members helping each other. Let’s keep this going and bring awareness to our society for HOH.

Susana A.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I started wearing hearing aids in 2017, and since then HLAA has provided me with so much information and resources about hearing loss. I truly appreciate the role HLAA has played in helping me navigate my way through life with hearing loss.

Tonyf

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This organization has taught me more about hearing loss than any doctor or audiologist AND it hasn't cost me any money. I had never heard about technology other than hearing aids before I discovered HLAA. I've learned how to protect my hearing by knowing about drugs that can cause hearing loss and the noise levels that can be dangerous. I've learned how to make better purchasing decisions when it comes to hearing aids and other hearing assistive technology. I've learned that there are solutions when hearing aids are no longer an option and what to expect if I ever need to consider a cochlear implant. I've also learned how to advocate and about the laws that protect people with hearing loss.
Tony

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

There are a lot of dedicated staff at the national and local levels. My life has changed for the better in the 5 years that I've been involved.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I’m reminded daily of the wonderful support network the HLAA has established for those who are deaf and hard of hearing! It’s refreshing to see!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I initially became involved with HLAA when I retired and relocated to AZ. I had had a sudden hearing loss due to meningitis and took an early retirement. I was interested in supporting individuals with hearing loss as well as advocating for awareness and accessibility in all aspects of communication. I attended meetings to learn about hearing support and advocacy and very early on, I was involved in advocacy in Arizona to have a bill passed that would include having information about the telecoil explained to individuals when they are purchasing their hearing aids. I found out that national HLAA advocated for individuals with hearing loss at the national level and without their support , essential communication accessibility aids would not be there for us. These included captioning for TVs, mobile phones accessible with hearing aids and cochlear implants, and CART, Communication Access for Realtime Translation. HLAA is advocating for induction loops to be installed in a variety of places where individuals with hearing loss need the accessibility to hear, such as theaters, places of worship and airports. During these past 18 months, HLAA has stepped up and provided webinars on loneliness during the pandemic, hearing assistive technology and how to enjoy music. The Hearing Loss Association of America is a well known and respected consumer driven national organization that continues to be at the forefront of topics and products for individuals with hearing loss. I am so privileged to be a part of this organization that is working for increased communication access for all individuals with hearing loss.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I found Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) about 7 years ago when I was looking for some kind of support group for my hearing loss. I was born with hearing loss so dealing with the daily living in a hearing world was very emotionally and mentally draining for me. HLAA exposed me to other individuals with hearing loss like myself who could share their experiences and provide support toward me that I never had before. I also found out they had a Walk4Hearing fundraising campaign that I got involved with that has been a wonderful experience for me.

I'm very thankful for the information, education and support I have received from HLAA. I really appreciate how hard this organization works for the hearing loss community that is growing bigger and bigger. I certainly intend to continue supporting and being involved with HLAA!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I am 81 years old. I live on my Social Security. I am not destitute but have to rent my housing so cannot scrape together enough money to get hearing aids. I have profound hearing loss in my left ear and have had a running ear infection that is not clearing on its own. The drop prescribed by my ENT are $217.00 out of pocket so couldn’t get that. The RX originally prescribed were unsuccessful in treating the infection.
My other ear is not hearing well either. I cannot hear well enough to be out and about without being exceptionally careful in walking outside. I have no car as I felt driving unsafe. I had excruciating earaches as a child. Such loss of hearing events while flying that at 65 I had first temp tubes out in my ears them permanent ones. When those worked their way out, the one in my left that has profound hearing loss was left with a perforated ear drum. I am at a total loss as to what to do.
I lost my son totally unexpectedly last October. He was the only one who helped me with things. Any help would be enormously appreciated.
Sincerely,
Linda N Hutchinson
16 Saint John St
Norwalk, Connecticut 06855
512-577-8301

Comments ( 1 )

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HLAA-Development 08/31/2021

Linda, Thank you for sharing your story, your frustrations and the challenges you are facing. An HLAA staff member will reach out to you privately.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I had a relatively sudden bilateral hearing loss more than 35 years ago that left me not only with a moderate to severe loss, but with considerable distortion of sound as well. After struggling for five years, I found HLAA and my life changed from one of despair and isolation to one of hope and engagement. I have been active in the organization as a volunteer for many years now to give back to others what so many have given to me. At this point, I can say with complete conviction that I have gained far more than I have lost.

Donor

Rating: 5

48 million Americans have hearing loss and I'm one of them. HLAA surrounds me with a community of people who understand what it's like to function in the hearing world while suffering from a hearing loss. I learn coping strategies, get inspired, and make meaningful connections. HLAA advocates for people like me by going to Capitol Hill to promote legislation like the Americans with Disability Act, Medicare coverage for hearing exams, and other laws that make the world accessible to someone with a hearing loss.

Client Served

Rating: 5

HLAA is the strongest voice for people with hearing loss, offering education, guidance, and support. An organization you can trust whose work on our behalf is exemplary.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

HLAA is the clear leader in advocating for people with hearing loss. Millions of people benefit from the organization’s work to ensure that accommodations are in place so we can live equitably and successfully with our hearing loss. In addition to carrying out its agenda at the national level, HLAA offers opportunities to educate and empower individuals through its network of chapters across the country. I have been a member of HLAA for twelve years and am grateful to have benefited from its wonderful work.

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Donor

Rating: 5

HLAA is an amazing organization that works to make the world hearing accessible for people like me who struggle to navigate the hearing world. Especially in the time of COVID-19 when in-person conversations are difficult because masks make lipreading impossible and when virtual platforms need work to be hearing accessible, HLAA has a been a valuable resource. HLAA's captioned webinars, virtual meetings, and virtual convention have provided people with hearing loss with a source of information, community, solutions, and encouragement.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

We found out that our third child has hearing loss when he was born. We were so scared and felt so lost because this was all new to us. We saw the flyer for HLAA San Diego Walk4Hearing at Marcus’ DHH infant class and joined in on the walk. We’ve met so many friends and we all connected to each other of having kids with hearing loss. I enjoy volunteering and helping in any way that I can. This walk for me brings strong, pride, and teaches my friends and community about people with hearing loss, and in the importance of taking care of our hearing.

Richard118

Board Member

Rating: 5

HLAA is a critically important hearing loss advocacy organization.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

An absolutely essential group for people w hearing loss

Volunteer

Rating: 5

HLAA inspired me to start a local chapter that has helped teens and young adults with hearing loss for over 13 years!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Strong skilled advocacy for national issues involving people with hearing loss.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have had a hearing loss all my life, but I was too embarrassed to tell anyone or to talk about it. I joined this organization because my two sons (then 8 and 6) were also hard of hearing. This organization helped me to overcome my fears so I could help my children. Along the way, I found help for myself. I have been involved ever since then. What a great deal!!

Board Member

Rating: 5

HLAA is an exceptionally valuable resource for persons who experience the many challenges of living with hearing loss. With a wide range of informational and peer support programs and the work of exceptional advocacy efforts to make communication access a key priority across a wide range of platforms, the organization is a gold mine of resources and offers hearing health care consumers the keys to living well with hearing loss.

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3

Board Member

Rating: 5

HLAA is the gold standard organization for people with hearing loss who are seeking information, support, and advocacy. Fueled by the contributions of a committed, creative staff and a network of volunteers, HLAA has become the go-to resource for hearing loss patients and their families.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started losing my hearing in my late 40's and it has been a progressive loss. I don't know what I would have done without the education and support I've received from HLAA. Wearing hearing aids isn't like glasses. They are helpful but don't restore your hearing to normal. I've learned about hearing loop assisitve listening systems that have allowed me to remain engaged in society, there are amplified and captioned telephones and my family and friends have even been helped. HLAA is a lifesaver for people with hearing loss!

Shari E.1

Board Member

Rating: 5

An absolutely essential organization representing people with hearing loss on the national and local level. A life changer for people with hearing loss.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

Finding HLAA was so important in my hearing loss journey. Meeting other people with hearing loss helped me to battle stigma and learn many tricks and tips to better manage my hearing loss in a variety of situations. I made some wonderful friends and learned to advocate for myself and for other people with hearing loss. HLAA changed my life for the better.

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USNavy1969

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with HLAA over the past 8 years. There support level they have provided me and the Arizona hearing loss community has been phenomenal. The annual Walk4Hearing affords those with hearing loss an opportunity to meet others, share experiences and talk with vendors about new technology. HLAA is a great organization.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

I joined HLAA in 2013 after becoming late deafened at the age 62. I attended my first convention in 2015 and have not missed one since. HLAA is an organization that brings the heard of hearing community together through their chapter meeting, walk4Hearing and their annual conventions. It is through HLAA I truly understood that I am not alone and that their are individuals just like me who struggle each and every day with hearing loss. The annual conventions are filled with information, education, advocacy and building chapters. It is just an amazing experience to see so many individuals who are just like me.

Donor

Rating: 5

HLAA is truly the nation's voice for people with hearing loss. So grateful for its advocacy of hearing accessibility, such as via hearing loops, and for its support of people with hearing loss.

Donor

Rating: 5

Longtime member who appreciates transparency, clear communication of mission, activities and financial reporting. HLAA runs lean on fund raising costs to allow more donor dollars work for those with hearing loss.

Board Member

Rating: 5

My experience with HLAA began more than 20 years ago as an audiologist. Throughout these decades, I witnessed many patients evolve from hearing-impaired people relying on others to threat their hearing loss to empowered people self-advocating to live their best hearing life. HLAA plays a key role in this evolution at the individual patient level. In addition to that, HLAA positions itself where it needs to for policy - ranging from local to national levels. They are involved in all the conversations and decisions to ensure that their work is codified into law. It's been my honor and pleasure to work with HLAA's motivated and talented staff.
Kevin Franck PhD MBA CCC-A

Board Member

Rating: 5

HLAA is an organization driven by the mission of helping those with hearing loss. The staff and board members are an incredibly passionate group, dedicated to improving the lives of the hard-of-hearing through groundbreaking, innovative initiatives in the areas of policy, employment, technology and more. I have severe hearing loss and started a company to enhance sound on phone calls and computer for those with hearing loss. I was so inspired by the mission of the HLAA after meeting local chapter groups, interacting with national board members and attending HLAA conferences that I immediately accepted an offer to consider being on the board, knowing it was an opportunity to work with a dedicated group to make a difference in the lives of millions of the hard-of-hearing.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I was a business executive who had to stay up all evening in hotels because I couldn't hear the alarms, phones or even pounding on the door. From my first contact with HLAA at the Chapter level. I have so much gratitude for the education they provide and the people they help especially our Veterans. They help others at the consumer level so good choices can be made and resources used wisely. I have been with HLAA for over 20 years and can speak first hand to the positive impact of helping others to communicate more effectively.

veronicatwin1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a life time Prince Georges County resident, entrepreneur, community advocate, and political activist -- with a passion for service.

Most important, after experiencing loss of her hearing suddenly in 2013 after a vertigo attack and a subsequent one in 2015 I sought cochlear implants which allows me to continue to live in the hearing world. I decided to fight the barriers and discrimination faced by others who experience hearing loss -most often in silence. To that end I discovered the Hearing Loss Association of America and have never looked back. In 2016 I decided to form the Hearing Loss of Association of America (HLAA) Prince Georges County Chapter. Early on I discovered there was so much information and resources available for persons with hearing loss that was not getting to the very community that could benefit from it. Through information provided by HLAA and local chapters I have been able to fulfill the mission to open the world of communication to people with hearing loss by providing information, education, support and advocacy. In this capacity I am most proud of the work she done in collaboration with all of MD Chapters in passing a bill in the 2019 General Assembly session which requires hearing induction loops be installed in public places in which state funds are being used to reconstruction or renovations.

The Chapter continues its efforts in Prince Georges County to educate and change people’s perceptions of persons with hearing loss. The information garnered through HLAA allows me to bring awareness about hearing loss to diverse audiences throughout the metropolitan area by conducting presentations on various topics including on adjusting to your hearing loss, workplace environment, partnering with Emergency Service providers, family & friends and knowing your rights.

I strongly believe if it were not for the support from HLAA I would have suffered in silence.

Veronica Davila Steele, President
HLAA Prince George's County Chapter

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Hearing Loss Association of America has really made a big impact of my life with my hearing loss and they are so wonderful and amazing people who loved to help others with hearing loss! I am proud to be part of the HLAA Membership for the last 14 years now! I am so happy that I did join with them 14 years ago and if wasn't for them being around my life wouldn't have better for myself dealing with my own hearing loss growing as a child. I am glad that made the decision to be part of the Hearing Loss Association of America. I am the HLAA Ohio State Chapter Coordinator and HLAA Orrville-Wooster Chapter President and has been amazing journey and I loved helping people with hearing loss and they are not alone! HLAA is a wonderful non profit organization to volunteer your time and my time was never wasted and it was well worth my time volunteering for HLAA!
Debbie Schaaf

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have learned so much about my hearing loss through attending the HLAA Chapter Meetings, HLAA National Convention, and through the resources provided through their magazine and website. Before I joined HLAA, I wore one hearing aid thinking I was getting what I needed. Now, I can't live without my two hearing aids, with a telecoil that gives me access in public facilities, bluetooth to connect me to my technology (phone, iPad, etc), and a support network that spans across the country. HLAA incorporates advocacy into the fabric of their organization, from national advocacy on technology and the rights of people with hearing loss, to the local chapters that advocate locally. There is no other consumer organization that does as much as Hearing Loss Association of America. This organization is a best kept secret that everyone needs to know about.

1 Latisha P.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I've been a member of the Hearing Loss Association of America since 2010. Since joining HLAA, I've learned more about understanding hearing loss, increased my social networks, improved my social life including my personal and workplace relationships. HLAA has such a positive impact on my life that leaders inspired me to start a local chapter. With the support of others, HLAA-Essex County was founded in 2015. In addition, HLAA has given me a pathway to lead and help others with hearing loss from ages 4 to senior citizens. I am proud to be part of a nonprofit that has helped me live better with hearing loss. Thank you HLAA!!

Board Member

Rating: 5

This is a great organization! My local chapter offers all sorts of informative meetings, and the national organization is an effective advocate for people with hearing loss.

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Hearing Loss Association of America is governed by a sophisticated Board of Trustees, passionate about helping those with hearing loss. Board governance is is effected by an outstanding administrative staff with years of experience in creating effective programmatic activity that reaches out to a well developed state and local chapter structure, its membership, and the millions upon millions of other Americans with hearing loss. That programmatic activity can extend from individual counseling on hearing loss, raising public awareness on how to deal with and treat hearing loss, and enhancing governmental response to the crisis of untreated hearing loss. It is the nation's primary advocacy organization for those with hearing loss.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

J. Saunders

The HLAA strives to improve the lives of those with hearing loss through outstanding programs. Those programs are designed to educate on the biological and psychological aspects of hearing loss and appropriate paths to follow to restore communicability in those experiencing this difficulty, to educate on the availability of modern hearing assistive technology, to provide advocacy in the public sphere for those with hearing loss, and to provide outreach via a fully developed and vibrant network of national chapters where those with hearing loss can interact and learn from each other.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

HLAA is a critical resource for persons with hearing loss in multiple ways - it advocates for policies that promote access, including the widespread use of captioning; it advocates for legislation that promotes insurance coverage; its chapters provide support and education. So many individuals who have been touched by HLAA emphasis how important it was to them being able to reengage in life. And it does everything with a small but super dedicated staff!

Sandy P.1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

I am 43 years old i was out for 1 hour shooting guns with my husband in june 2018 and had the foam ear plugs in and when we were done i couldn't hear a sound i went to bed and then was able to hear just a little bit 2 weeks went by and got back half and thats all i tried stroids i teied simple timenothing worked i hav missed like 4 days of work 5 dr visits and now i need to buy a full set of hearing aids just because i spent 1 hr with my husband. Am i going to blame him no me i cant but now i cant hear for the rest of my life. I have 3 grand children to help raise i work 2 jobs im very active. Does hearing aids help when the dr put a test pair on me i cried.i could hear a pen click. It was a miracle.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was at a high school reunion last summer, having a hard time trying to hear what was going on. I had one ear that could hear with a hearing aid, and one that didn't work. A classmate, Nancy Sonnabend an HLAA board member, talked about her cochlear implant and encouraged me to get evaluated for one. I went to Mayo Clinic for the evaluation, then had the implant done in Chicago late last fall. My CI ear is now the "good ear" and my hearing is dramatically better.

Board Member

Rating: 4

I was introduced to HLAA by my hearing aid dealer when it was first founded. As a member
for many years, I am always learning new coping techniques, hearing about research and sharing ideas with people who understand my problems. I feel very fortunate to be a part of the HLAA compassionate, caring community!

Board Member

Rating: 5

Although I had had hearing loss for more than 30 years, I knew very little about it until I found HLAA. Through the annual conventions, newsletters, the activities of the local chapter, the website, HLAA has provided me with invaluable information and support that I could not get elsewhere. Because I serve on the board, I see the workings of the organization first hand. Staff and fellow board members are hardworking, creative, and efficient, making the most of available resources. There is no equivalent organization dedicated to the health and welfare of adults with hearing loss, which affects one in five adults, and we are very lucky to have HLAA to keep not only its members but also legislators and community leaders educated and aware of the needs of people with hearing loss.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have just become a board member of the Hearing Loss Association of America but I have been a member since 2010, and my review is based on my experience as a member.

I have had hearing loss since 1980, which got progressively worse until by 2009 it had deteriorated to the extent that I was profoundly deaf in one ear and close to it in the other.

I left my long time job as a journalist at the end of that year, and suddenly found myself without hearing, without a job, and really without any sense of what kind of life was open to me.

I had not heard of HLAA until March of 2010. I signed up to go to the Annual Convention, just to see what it offered. I was amazed by the resources discussed at the convention, by the expert advice offered, by the advocacy for people like me. I became an active member of the national organization and then of the Manhattan chapter, where I met many others with hearing loss like mine.

Joining HLAA literally restored my life, and gave me the confidence to figure out how to live productively with hearing loss.

Ann Marie P.1

Board Member

Rating: 5

Finding HLAA has been a blessing. It has enabled me to connect with others who share the same struggles with hearing loss. The friendships I have made are an important part of my life. HLAA has taught me about the importance of advocating for the needs of people with hearing loss. I am a board member of both an HLAA chapter and a state organization.

Jeff B.3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

When I first lost my hearing, isolation set it. I looked for a support group since I was sure I was the only one with hearing loss. After being warmly greeted at my first meeting, I joined 10 others to discuss coping skills for eating out in a restaurant. I was not alone! And I developed sweet friendships with others who wanted to know more about hearing loss - and who also enjoyed dining out - and able to do so comfortably!

Regular chapter meetings gave me the confidence I needed to confront my hearing loss. I learned how we do hear, what can go wrong with our hearing, and what to look for in a hearing loss professional. We enjoyed camaraderie as we discussed coping skills is a myriad of noisy situations Most importantly, we learned to advocate for ourselves and others with hearing loss.

Reaching out to others to educate and support them is key to nurturing self-esteem and confidence. HLAA sponsors yearly national conventions to showcase the latest research and assistive devices to the 48 million Americans with hearing loss. As a 501 (3)(c) organization, HLAA's low-cost, but high-in-value membership also includes bi-monthly issues of HEARING LIFE magazine. This informative and award-winning magazine in itself is worth more than the low annual membership fee. A small, but highly dedicated and efficient staff, leads a motivated corp of volunteers across the country to reach out and help those with hearing loss.

The Hearing Loss Association of Amerca (HLAA) is a top-notch organization with national scope, but local and individual attention. I give them 10 stars!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

Our HLAAG(HLAA Augusta Ga.) has just been declared inactive/dormant. The funds of $3,000+ that HLAAG had earmarked for scholarships for needy children to send to Camp Juliena has been closed out and sent to National. None of that money could be allocated to send the children to Camp Juliena as we have done in the last few years as well as sending monetary donations.

Last year HLAAG had sponsored 4 children to attend camp. I had looked forward to sending more to Camp Juliena this year. When I approached HLAAG's treasurer, I was told that our chapter has been declared inactive by State Director of Ga HLAA - a State Officer. Our pleas to Mr. _____ to have the monies returned fell on deaf ears so now we are up against a hard deadline, only a few weeks away, to try to find money to send these kids to camp. If this is the kind of "leadership" HLAA National supports then we want no part of this organisation





Comments ( 1 )

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HLAA-Development 05/01/2018

The HLAA-Augusta Chapter was declared inactive because they did not meet the obligations of an HLAA Chapter after repeated attempts to help them do so. As part of the fiduciary responsibility of HLAA, since there are no officers or active HLAA National members in leadership of the HLAA-Augusta Chapter, the national organization suspended their status and, according to policy, is holding the chapter funds in escrow until they can reform the chapter or start a new one in the same area. At that point, when a proper HLAA Chapter governing board is established and when they hold regular meetings, they will receive the money to resume HLAA Chapter status and fulfill the HLAA mission in the community. HLAA has also offered to honor the commitment to Camp Juliena by sending a check for scholarships. There has been no response from the people in Augusta who committed donors’ money to Camp Juliena.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was in my 20's when I reluctantly received my 1st pair of hearing aids. I found an HLAA (Formerly Self Help For Hard Of Hearing) magazine in the Audioligist's office. I was feeling ambivalent about wearing hearing aids and was convinced that only old people wore them. The articles I read in the HLAA monthly magazine gave me hope, I finally found people who understood my invisible condition. The hearing aids took some time to get used to and HLAA advised me what I should expect. I also learned that nothing was going to restore my hearing to normal. The improvement I noticed with my hearing aids was remarkable. I could really hear again. I joined HLAA and went to a few conventions. I have never regretted any involvement with HLAA. The organization really cares about hearing impairment by providing resources, guidance and education. I am now in my 60's and still work in the Information Technology field that I almost gave up because I could not hear. I owe a debt of gratitude to HLAA and could never give back what they have given to me. Thank you to everyone in Bethesda, MD that keep HLAA avaialable to all.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

When I was 42 years old I experienced a sudden hearing loss that catapulted me from better than normal hearing to wearing 2 hearing aids to help my now profound hearing loss. I knew no one with hearing loss or that wore a hearing aid. Learning about HLAA and attending local meetings was a turning point for me. I found that I was not the only person with this bizarre unpleasant condition, I found people that would discuss what things helped them and how to find them, I continued to learn more at each meeting, event, and even national conventions. I look forward to reading their "Hearing Loss Magazine" and to things posted online. I was no longer the only one I knew with hearing loss.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I used to live in a large metro area where my friends were active members of HLAA. Now I live in a smaller town without an active HLAA chapter. I'm working hard to educate others on what HLAA has to offer. Past HLAA conventions have given me the power and passion to continue what I no longer have, but working hard to achieve it.

Advisor

Rating: 5

As a hearing impaired person since birth and founder of Lessersound (I was born in to a world of lesser sound and did not get hearing aids until I was 26). Since then I have become a hearing advocate and learned of HLAA. The way I would describe it is as Hemmingway once wrote about the need for a "clean well lighted place" which I construe as a place of refuge from the dark, dreary and hostile world outside; HLAA provides outreach, comfort, support, education, advocacy and guidance for those of us H-I-P (Hearing Impaired People) who desperately need what HLAA offers . Figuratively a shoulder to cry on, a warm hug for those in the hearing dark and an understanding and empathy for we who are a part of my lessersound world (and large family) and the families and loved ones who care, as HLAA does for the many. Wayne Lewis Lesser founder lessersound, and creator of lessersoundapp. com.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 2

Although I appreciate the intent of making hearing aids more accessible and affordable, I'm saddened by the HLAAs support of OTC hearing aids. Here's why. 1) They're already available at Walmart, Rite Aid, the internet and in magazines. This legislation simply paves the way for the big corporations (Samsung, and Bose) backing this legislation to jump into a new lucrative market 2) The cost and technology of OTC aids will be the same as hearing aids already available from professional hearing aid specialists and audiologists (granted some providers never inform or offer the lower cost devices to their clients to increase their profits). People will actually be paying the same price for hearing aids but won't get the professional fitting and follow-up that dramatically increases their chances of success and satisfaction. 3) Most HLAA members have severe to profound hearing losses that can ONLY be treated effectively by professionals, so this legislation will have virtually no benefit to the vast majority of HLAA membership. 4) Most HLAA members I have spoken to in Oregon Do NOT support this legislation because they've experienced the benefits of receiving professional testing, consultation, fitting, and often quarterly follow-up for the many years they use their devices.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

A superb organization providing information & support to persons living with hearing loss, including coping strategies, information on rapidly developing assistive technology and advocacy services. Help is providing through an excellent magazine, informational programs, captioned webinars, chat rooms, programs sponsored by local chapters, discounts on phones and assistive listening devices, etc.

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Client Served

Rating: 5

I suffered sudden deafness in my left ear on 8/5/08. HLAA has helped me through the national, state and local chapter to understand my disability. The HLAA magazine is very informative. The local monthly chapter meetings allow me to interact and learn from other hearing impaired people. I highly recommend HLAA for knowledge, research updates, advocacy and so much more regarding hearing loss issues.

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General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

HLAA is the organization to go to for much needed information on hearing loss. It is the only resource for questions you might have about dealing with your hearing loss. From coping skills to the latest technology to peer support .the association is the most knowledgeable and informative . I can say without hesitation that this group of dedicated people with hearing loss have made a significant difference in my life with the service and information that they provide.

Board Member

Rating: 5

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!!!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I became aware of HLAA and the local Colorado Springs Chapter as a member of Sertoma, Inc. SERTOMA has a partnership arrangement with HLAA because of our common mission of extending services to the hearing impaired and promoting hearing health. For the past two and one half years I have been a member HLAA. I can honestly say that through the interaction with the local chapter members and leadership plus reading the Hearing Loss magazine my knowledge has increased exponentially.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Best way to overcome the loneliness of hearing loss.

staffov

Volunteer

Rating: 5

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

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Board Member

Rating: 5

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!

Board Member

Rating: 5

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”.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have belonged to HLAA for 35 years. I found HLAA in 1984.
In gratitude I have been Editor of the state newsletter for 15 years,
The Hearing Loss Californian. FREE, 20 pages in color, with a database of 5300 names.
People with hearing loss have an invisibile disability.
HLAA works to give us access to movies, internet, theater, etc
with FM, Infrared and room loops
HLAA has a convention once a year.The 2016 Convention is in June in Washington, DC..
At their conventions, everything is accessible.
All workshops are captioned for instance. People with hearing loss need support.
I consider my HLAA friends to be my second family

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Client Served

Rating: 5

Hearing Loss is devastating and isolating. HLAA will jump in immediately with friendly and knowledgable volunteers and leaders who will help you cope. HLAA educates us on the best way to communicate with our world. HLAA gives hope. With two out of ten folks developing hearing loss, HLAA is invaluable and needed. Thank you.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a volunteer board member on both the local chapter and the state levels and as a delegate to national HLAA conventions I have experienced and observed the services and activities that HLAA provides for people with Hearing Loss. It is a one-stop organization for information, references, and help. Additionally, they advocate in the public domain to make venues and activities accessible to those with hearing loss. When my profound hearing loss was identified 25 years ago I did not know anyone with a hearing loss, nor where to go for information. Since then through HLAA I have found a wealth of information, resources, and friendships.

Edward18

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) has changed my life by providing me with the hearing, listening and communication tools which I needed to lead an active family, social and career lifestyle again. I don't think most people realize that hearing aids and cochlear implants can only help you so far. These hearing devices are not like eye glasses in that can rarely get one anywhere near a 20/20 solution, especially with a profound loss like mine. Even with them, I could not function at most family gatherings, community events or in the workplace. But HLAA offer the information, education and support to complement and build off one's hearing devices to significantly improve one's understanding of speech. With HLAA's help, I can again enjoy parties, the theatre and a rewarding career. HLAA is a life saver!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Hearing Loss Association of America is a wonderful organization that helps people with hearing loss through support advocacy and education. I have found many wonderful friendships from being part of this organization. From those friendship forges the ability to advocate and educate others about hearing loss and HLAA.

Julieo

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Hearing Loss Association of America, Inc., a consumer based organization, which was formerly known as Self Help for Hard of Hearing People, Inc., has done more to create an awareness of the uniqueness of partial deafness than any other organization in the world. There are millions of hard of hearing Americans. According to the National Institutes of Health 50 million are affected by this invisible condition. SHHH/HLAA has educated, advocated and provided peer support since its founding in 1979. Prior to receiving information from this organization my life was falling apart. I was a 40-something who had given up my career because I didn't hear well, and felt I was being unfair to my students. I felt isolated and misunderstood. I had received no information from my hearing healthcare professionals about assistive technology that could enhance my hearing instruments. I learned what I know from people, like me, who have hearing loss; members of HLAA. I'm most grateful to this organization for the work it does. Today, I'm comfortable living in the hearing mainstream in spite of progressive sensorineural hearing loss. I now have a cochlear implant, something I would likely not have done, had it not been for the opportunity to meet others through HLAA who had gone before me. It is a miracle, as are the new hearing aids that can do so much more than they could do even a decade ago. HLAA has been a frontrunner in promoting research and development in both medicine and technology, legislation, and the kind of personal support that hard of hearing people need. Chapters of HLAA are located throughout the United States,. Many more should be formed. I can't say enough about the importance of the work HLAA does.

Previous Stories
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Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Hearing Loss Association of America has grown from a small grassroots organization called Self Help for Hard of Hearing People, Inc. (SHHH) to become 'The Nation's Voice for People with Hearing Loss', as The Hearing Loss Association of America, Inc. (HLAA) today. No other consumer based organization had reached out to people with partial deafness prior to SHHH. A major achievement of SHHH was to identify the much larger hard of hearing population as being separate from the better known population that embraces Deafness as a culture. By so doing, medical research has increased remarkably in the field of deafness, in spite of the fact that Deaf Culture advocates (Less than 1% of the whole 32 million Americans with hearing loss) continue to oppose curing the disability to preserve the culture. Without the force of SHHH/HLAA the advancements in cochlear implants, hearing instruments and other hearing assistive technologies would likely be way behind where they are today. Against many odds, HLAA has made a positive difference in the way the public perceives people with hearing loss. And, I believe the organization can achieve much more than it has already if it has more resources.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

HLAA teaches people how to cope with hearing loss. It is the best source of information on assistive devices and how to hear in challenging situations. HLAA is my favorite non profit because it does its job of educating hard of hearing well. What a difference HLAA made in my life. It gave me the tools to succeed in Graduate School.