Mission: The Decibels Foundation’s mission is to ensure that:
- children with hearing loss and their families receive specialized early intervention services;
- they have access to necessary technology and equipment, and;
- the professionals working with this population in school settings are knowledgeable about the challenges these children face and are supported in helping these students succeed both academically and socially.
We fulfill this mission by funding early intervention programs for children with hearing loss and their families, such as the Minute Man Arc Early Intervention Program for Children with Hearing Loss in Concord.
Decibels also helps to educate educators by offering workshops and training sessions for professionals who are working with children using hearing aids and cochlear implants in regular education settings.
Results: This year alone, our donors helped us do some incredible things. We've continued the support of weekly playgroups, speech therapy and parent support groups, while expanding to include a Baby Group. We hosted a successful full-day workshop, attended by 140 professionals on 'Meeting the Needs of Young Children with Hearing Loss.' We also gifted $27,500 to various programs at Children's Hospital Boston, including the Sound Start Hearing Aid Loan Bank and the Cochlear Implant Spare Parts Bank.
None of this would be possible without our valued supporters. Your impact over the past ten years has resulted in the following incredible achievements:
- The cornerstone of the Decibels Foundation's work is the Minute Man Arc Early Intervention Program for Children with Hearing Loss. We understand that children with hearing loss need specialized services during the crucial early years of development. 64 children and their families have benefited from this program since its inception.
- As more than 80 percent of children who are or were hearing impaired now attend their local schools, part of our mission is to ensure these educators understand what it takes to teach a child with hearing loss. Since 2008, our Education Specialist, Dr. Honore Weiner has provided 785 consultative hours to local school districts for 44 school-age kids with hearing loss.
- Children with hearing loss need the support of knowledgeable professionals. Since 2007, the Decibels Foundation has hosted five full-day workshops covering four different hearing loss related topics. Over 450 teachers, speech therapists, and professionals working with children with hearing loss have attended and rated the workshops an average score of 1.4 out of 5 (1 being the highest).
- In an effort to encourage the best and brightest to pursue careers helping children with hearing loss, the Decibels Foundation has awarded $30,000 to our Decibels Scholars. To date, five top students in the Graduate Program of the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Emerson College have received this honor.
Target demographics: Children with hearing loss (birth to 21 years old) and their families.
Programs: Donate proceeds from charitable events serving deaf children
Decibels is nothing short of a miraculous resource for children with hearing loss and their families. Hearing loss is a low incidence birth defect; however, intervention before 6 months of age means the difference between a child in regular, mainstream kindergarten vs special programs and services at great cost to the school district. By providing funding for birth to three programs, parent education, and financial assistance for the exorbitantly expensive hearing equipment, Decibels is ensuring a successful outcome for hundreds of children in the Metro Boston area. Parents in particular benefit from their support, at a time when they are overwhelmed with how to take care of their new baby and this disability. They have been tireless in their fundraising, and have won awards such as the CLASSY Award for nonprofits. They are truly an asset to the community!