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2018 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Texas Hands & Voices

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Deaf & Hearing Impaired Centers, Disabilities, Ear & Throat Diseases, Education, Health, Human Services

Mission: Texas Hands & Voices (TX H&V) offers support, information and resources in an unbiased manner to families with children who are deaf and hard of hearing. Our outreach activities, parent/professional/community collaboration, and advocacy efforts are focused on enabling Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing children to reach their highest potential.

Results: Our Guide By Your Side program offers direct Parent to Parent support and direct support from Deaf and Hard of Hearing adults to parents. 120 matches to date in this fiscal year. Webinars for families and professionals on the importance of family involvement in the education of a Deaf/HH child's life. Monthly FB chat with topics affecting our families and a FB page dedicated to the Hispanic families of Texas. Parent support events across Texas. Co-host Family Weekend Retreat with ERCOD and TSBVI Partnering with DSHS TEHDI program to reduce loss to follow up rates for Texas newborns who refer on their newborn hearing screening. Over 2000 families reached. Second annual ASTra training to 40 Level 1 attendees

Target demographics: families of children birth to 21 who are deaf or hard of hearing

Direct beneficiaries per year: (FY 16-17) 99 families matched with Guides through our GBYS program and hosted over 20 family events in seven geographic areas with a total of over 660 attendees and reached over 1200 families and professionals in our eNews contact database. Our FTGs have reached 2000 families to assist with reaching the "next steps" in their child's hearing screening.

Geographic areas served: Texas

Programs: We offer unbiased support to families through networking, resource sharing, a website & Facebook pages, parent & professional trainings, newsletters, social events and workshops. Our parent to parent support program Guide By Your Side TM, matches specially trained “Guides” to work directly with families in need of the unique support that comes from someone else who has walked the path him/herself and can share from direct experience and wisdom. Enrolling in the Guide By Your Side TM program is easy, confidential and free of charge. Additionally our Follow Through Guide program works to support families who have recently been referred for additional hearing screening through direct parent to parent contact. Our new ASTra program offers trainings on D/HH issues in educational advocacy in the Hands & Voices context: a commitment to unbiased support of families regardless of language and communication approaches used by their children and across the full continuum of educational placement options, so that every child who is D/HH has the opportunity to achieve their full potential. ASTra content is derived from years of direct advocacy experience working with families in schools, attending advocacy trainings from legal experts, providing trainings, and the Hands & Voices Educational Advocacy Guidebook. Fall of 2017 we will begin matching families with ASTra Advocates to help with advocacy resources, support, and in some cases, attend an IEP meeting with the family.

Community Stories

67 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Texas Hands and Voices provides a great resource for parents that are navigating life with a child with a hearing loss.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a mother of a Deaf child as well as an interpreter in the Deaf community, but when I needed answers that would best fit my family, Texas Hands & Voices made sure that I know I had options. They gave me the support & encouragement I needed to make the decisions that would best meet the needs of my child. They made sure I had access to a parent advocate as well as a Deaf advocate that would understand my desire to ensure that my child received the best education possible in an environment that would meet his academic needs as well as challenges. They also sent me a book with the stories of other parents that had had to face the same challenges that I faced in dealing with a Deaf child in a hearing world, so I would know that I was not alone & that with the right support & resources I could successfully navigate through the system. I am eternally grateful to this organization for all the help, information, activities, & support they continue to give to families like mine at a time when we need it most.

Sonia A.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Love all of their articles, facebook is great, always willing to help out parents. It's the best non profit for a parent with a deaf or hard of hearing child. Recently I wrote with a question on their facebook wall and they immediately answered my question and helped me help my daughter with her math homework.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Hands and Voices is an organization that is dedicated to increase awareness and discourage bias relate to individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. I am a member of the public who has gained information and awareness as well as being humbled to learn that I did have misinformation that led to bias. My personal experience is that their style to teaching and advocating, while passionate, is also very positive and approachable. This is so important when attempting to increase awareness and advocate for change.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Texas Hands and Voices and their Guide By Your Side program was a wonderful resource for our family when we found out our daughter was deaf. I felt connected immediately to people that understood the path that I was walking and I could not place a value on the support I received!

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

Texas Hands and Voices and their Guide by Your Side program have been VERY beneficial to our family from the moment we got the diagnosis that our daughter was deaf. They provide parent to parent support and paired us with another parent that has walked this journey before us as well as a local professional that is always available to answer specific questions we might have. This organization serves many families in Texas and has a strong leadership team. If you have a deaf or hard of hearing child, being a part of this organization is a MUST! They are amazing!

Client Served

Rating: 5

This has been a wonderful resource for our family!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was very lost and overwhelmed and Texas Hands and Voices really helped show me a way through. Their materials and volunteers are oustanding: phone calls, emails, events, books and more. I'm very grateful for their help.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a mother of a child with hearing loss, I've found this non profit organization very beneficial for myself and family members. As well as their events and annual family weekend retreats, and supporting families in a non biased manner which brings families together and helps build lifetime friendships. THANK YOU!

Volunteer

Rating: 4

A great "Go To" support group for Deaf / Hard of Hearing children and adults, their families, friends, teachers, professionals, and coworkers. A must-need for a successful life-long transition and networking source.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

As a parent of a child with hearing loss and as coordinator for another family support program in Texas, I find great value in the resources and support that Texas Hands & Voices strive to provide for families. Their program is well-organized and comprehensive as they reach out to educate and provide emotional support to those affected by hearing loss.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

As a consultant who has worked with deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals and their families for many years, I have seen firsthand the results the programs and services offered by Texas Hands & Voices has on families. To see the look of concern on the face of the mother of a deaf child change into a smile with the realization that everything is going to be OK on this manageable journey with their child is a blessing. The organization is parent-driven and allows access to diverse possibilities for any family choice when it comes to seeking out answers to help deaf or hard-of-hearing children.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a provider who works every day with families of deaf and hard of hearing children, I lean heavily on Texas Hands and Voices GBYS program to help make sure families have the critical support they need from other families. The feeling of isolation as a parent of a deaf child can be overwhelming, and GBYS addresses it immediately and thoroughly. The executive staff at Texas H&V is a very passionate a commuted group of parents, and it has been a real pleasure to collaborate with them!

Client Served

Rating: 5

My son was diagnosed with severe hearing loss in both ears and after searching for support groups, I found Texas Hands & Voices. The information they provide is invaluable and so informative. As a parent of a hard of hearing child, it is comforting to know that there are organizations out there to turn to for support.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Texas Hands & Voice has helped our family by providing workshops and family weekend retreats where my husband and I can learn how to become our child's advocate and educate ourselves in how to help him succeed in life. By attending the workshops we have the opportunity to meet families facing similar challenges and know we are not alone. During the family retreats held each June our son has the opportunity to be with deaf role models and be in a world that is just like him-wonderful. We have seen his self esteem and language skills jump to higher levels just spending a weekend at the retreats. Thank you Hands & Voices--we love you all.

Donor

Rating: 3

Texas Hands and Voices offers the best information and support to parents and professionals that work with students who have a hearing impairment. They have become the go to source for many people all around the state and outside the state and this type of involvement and genuine interest is appreciated. Keep up the good work.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As an Advocate Educator, I teach parents about the laws and services regarding their child in Special Education. The good people I know at Texas Hands & Voices are always there to help me do a better job of serving these families. While I don't often encounter parents of children who are deaf or hard of hearing, when I do, I look to TXHV as a great resource and referral for these families. It's all about networking and I'm pleased to have such a great relationship with the Abilene area representatives from Texas Hands & Voices!

swainscott

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a professional serving parents and their children who are deaf and hard of hearing for more than twenty years, I see incredible value in Texas Hands and Voices in meeting the needs of families. They provide parent-to-parent support, education and resources, and simply connect families in a way that empowers them. I especially appreciate the mission-mindedness of the organization, and the value placed on family decisions without promoting a specific philosophy. My new favorite feature is the Tuesday evening Facebook chats that inform and support in such practical ways.

Gene M.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a kid growing up with partial hearing loss I sometimes struggled with the challenges of being hearing impaired. As an adult, Texas Hands & Voices has given me the opportunity to help parents of children with severe hearing loss become more confident about facing their challenges. This is a great family-focused organization and they provide a valuable resource to parents and hard-of-hearing children.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My family including my two hard of hearing sons ages 3 and 5 attended the weekend retreat this past summer. The Texas Hands & Voices representatives were very helpful and caring. My boys had a great time and my family and I learned a lot. We started to learn more about the services and support and will continue to attend some events around the Houston area. I hope anyone with deaf or hard of hearing children learns more about this organization.

Advisor

Rating: 5

This non-profit is true to it's mission and provides support to the families that I work with in countless ways throughout this HUGE state of Texas. Texas Hands & Voices is by parents and for parents of Deaf and hard of hearing children, but demonstrate a true collaboration between parents and professionals working toward common goals for this group of parents and children that starts with their dedicated Executive Director and Board of Directors. They demonstrate an impressive use of social media to bring families together and provide a broad range of needed resources to families. Their website is full of valuable information about upcoming events around the state and resources for families, and has become the "go-to" site for families with Deaf or hard of hearing children in Texas. I'm proud to be affiliated with this wonderful organization.