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VDDHH and HLAA Greater Richmond Chapter partner to educate individuals about the latest in hearing aid technology

The Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (VDDHH) is partnering with the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) Greater Richmond Chapter to host the ninth annual community informational session for individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing, DeafBlind, or who have difficulty speaking. This year’s event is titled “A Most Confusing Wearable – The Hearing Aid” and will focus on the newest hearing aid technologies available on the market – specifically telecoil and Bluetooth.

Dr. Shantell Lewis, Chief Audiologist of Virginia Professional Hearing Healthcare Center and Virginia Professional Hearing Aid Center, will be the guest presenter and will provide guests with a broad overview of everything one should know before meeting with an audiologist and purchasing a hearing aid.

Topics to be covered include:

  • What questions to ask before buying a hearing aid
  • Telecoil and Bluetooth – what you need to know about hearing aids equipped with these new technologies
  • How to determine if a hearing aid will help you
  • Insurance and other resources to help pay for hearing aids
  • Hearing aid maintenance

Attendees will also be able to see examples of the newest hearing aid devices, as well as specialized telecommunication equipment that is available to qualified applicants through the VDDHH Technology Assistance Program.

“These events have been a wonderful partnership between VDDHH and HLAA of Greater Richmond to inform and educate the public about communications access issues impacting the local deaf and hard of hearing community,” said Christine Ruderson, VDDHH. “With so many new technologies and devices on the market, hearing aids are a hot topic right now, and we find that many people are confused. So this is a great opportunity for people to come and see the newest equipment and ask questions, so they are better prepared to talk to their audiologist and make informed decisions.”

This event is free to attend. Refreshments will be served and door prizes will be awarded. Guests are encouraged to R.S.V.P. to Christine Ruderson at Christine.ruderson@vddhh.gov or 804-662-9710.

Don’t Miss Celebrate Communication 2017!

  • Apr 7, 2017
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  • publicrelationsdept

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On Saturday, April 22 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Northern Virginia Community College, the Northern Virginia community will turn out to attend the 2017 Celebrate Communication information fair.

With over 40 vendors, attendees will receive free information on a wide variety of resources, including state and local government programs, cutting edge technology for people who are deaf or hard of hearing, ASL and Cued Speech, hearing dogs, and much more.

Virginia Relay is proud to again be a sponsor of this event. Please be sure to visit our booth to learn more about the many services we offer. Thank you to Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons for organizing the event and Northern Virginia Community College for hosting it. This is always such a fun event and we can’t wait to attend!

The next meeting of the Virginia Relay Advisory Council (VRAC) will be held Thursday, April 6, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services (8004 Franklin Farms Drive) in Henrico. These meetings are open to the public. VRAC members represent a cross-section of relay users and serve as a consumer-based focus group for development and testing of new relay features and services. To learn more about VRAC, please visit: https://www.varelay.org/council.htm.

SIT Hosts Deaf Awareness Week Open House

  • Oct 15, 2016
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  • publicrelationsdept

This September during Deaf Awareness Week, the Statewide Interagency Team (SIT) of Virginia hosted an open house at the VDDHH and Virginia Department for Aging and
Rehabilitative Services (DARS) offices in Richmond. Guests watched demonstrations of the latest assistive communications technologies, and met representatives from local agencies and organizations dedicated to meeting the needs of Virginians who are deaf, hard of hearing, late-deafened and DeafBlind.

Thanks to everyone who attended!

The Statewide Interagency Team of Virginia

Elizabeth Spiers of the Virginia DBVI promoting the iCanConnect program for people who are DeafBlind.

Eric Raff, VDDHH Deputy Director with Linda Thornton and Paige Berry of the Virginia Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired (DBVI).

Our team of interpreters.

Ron Lanier, VDDHH Director, with Paige Berry of the Virginia Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired.

Celebrate Communication on Saturday, May 16

  • May 5, 2015
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  • publicrelationsdept

The Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons (NVRC), the area’s leading non-profit for people who are deaf, hard of hearing, late-deafened, and deafblind, is proud to host Celebrate Communication 2015. Northern Virginia’s premier information fair for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Community will be held from 10am – 2pm on Saturday, May 16 at the Northern Virginia Community College Ernst Center Gymnasium in Annandale.

Celebrate Communication is free for the public and will feature exhibits and activities providing information to support better communication and understanding for people with hearing loss and their families and friends. More than 40 organizations, businesses, educational institutions and community groups will be on site offering free information on hearing assistive technologies, cochlear implants, government services, hearing aids, telecommunications and Relay services, hearing assistance dogs, professional services, and more. A full list of sponsors and exhibitors can be found on NVRC’s website at www.nvrc.org.

Other activities for all ages will include:

  • Free hearing, vision and blood pressure screenings in the Lions Club Mobile Van
  • Face painting by Dee Vinchey from 11am – 1pm
  • Craft vendors
  • Raffle prizes
  • An appearance by NVRC’s mascot, Yellow Dog

AT A GLANCE:

WHAT: Celebrate Communication 2015

WHO: The Northern Virginia Resource Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons (NVRC)

WHEN: Saturday, May 16, 2015; 10am – 2pm

WHERE: Northern Virginia Community College
Ernst Center Gymnasium
8333 Little River Turnpike
Annandale, VA 22003

COST: Free; free parking available in “B” lots

CONTACT: Please contact Bonnie O’Leary at boleary@nvrc.org; 703-352-9055 x106 (V), 703-352-9056 (TTY), or visit www.nvrc.org.

Challenge Discovery Projects Bowl-A-Thon February 22

  • Feb 14, 2014
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  • publicrelationsdept

Join Virginia Relay at AMF Hanover Lanes in Mechanicsville, VA from 10:30am – 2:00pm on Saturday, February 22 for a Bowl-A-Thon to benefit Challenge Discovery Projects. Challenge Discovery Projects is committed to improving the emotional health and well-being of at-risk children and their families in Greater Richmond through programs that promote self-worth and positive, healthy relationships. To learn more, visit: www.challengediscoveryprojects.org.

The Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (VDDHH), Virginia Relay CapTel, and Heroes with Hearing LossProgram have partnered with the disAbility Resource Center in Fredericksburg, Va. to present “Soldiering on with Confidence & Independence,” a conference targeted specifically to United States military veterans who are hard of hearing and to their families.

The event will take place from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Saturday, November 9 at the John F. Fick Conference Center (1301 Sam Perry Boulevard) in Fredericksburg. The day will be filled with informational presentations and exhibit booths intended to honor veterans for their service and give them a forum to share information, personal experiences, strategies and more about living with hearing loss.

According to statistics from the Department of Defense, hearing loss is currently the number one service-related injury suffered by U.S. veterans returning home from the battlefields of Afghanistan and Iraq. Approximately 60 percent of veterans returning from Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom have some hearing damage, with 840,000 suffering from tinnitus and just over 700,000 suffering from hearing loss. More than 1.2 million veterans from every generation suffer from some form of hearing loss.

Conference attendees will have the opportunity to attend helpful presentations from leading physicians and audiologists; gather information about the latest hearing loss technologies, including implantable hearing aids and cochlear implants; meet other veterans with hearing loss and share experiences and coping skills; view live hearing dog demonstrations; and view a variety of assistive communication devices on display, courtesy of VDDHH and Hamilton CapTel.

The cost to attend “Soldiering on with Confidence & Independence” is $20 per person and registration will be limited to the first 200 reservations received. Scholarships made possible by the Virginia Wounded Warriors Program are available to veterans who may not be able to afford to attend.

For more information about or to register for “Soldiering on with Confidence & Independence,” please contact Arva Priola at The disAbility Resource Center via phone at 540-373-5890, via email at apriola@cildrc.org or arva16@verizon.net, or visit www.cildrc.org.

Click here to download our brochure and view the event schedule.

From 1972 to 2012: Share Your VDDHH Memories

  • Jul 6, 2012
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  • publicrelationsdept

Best Entries to be Read at 40th Anniversary Open House July 27-28

In honor of VDDHH’s 40th year of service excellence to Virginia’s deaf, hard-of-hearing, late-deafened and deaf-blind communities, Virginia Relay invites you to share your favorite VDDHH memories. Whether you are a member or employee of a partner organization, or a member of one of the communities VDDHH serves, please post your best stories, experiences or congratulations in the comments section below. Select entries will be shared at a celebratory open house to be hosted at VDDHH headquarters on July 27-28. We want to hear from you!

VDDHH 40th Anniversary Open House

  • VDDHH Headquarters: 1602 Rolling Hills Drive, Suite 203, Richmond, Va. 23229
  • Friday, July 27: 4pm-7pm
  • Saturday, July 28: 9am-Noon
  • Free and open to the public. No registration is required.

VDDHH and its partners invite you to help us celebrate 40 successful years of breaking down communication barriers in the deaf, hard-of-hearing, late-deafened and deaf-blind communities.

  • Hear about our vision for the future from Dr. Bill Hazel, Secretary of Health and Human Resources
  • See exhibits on the latest relay services, assistive technologies and more
  • Meet VDDHH staff and 17 partners, including the Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services, the Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired, Valley Community Services Board and more
  • Enjoy complimentary refreshments and fun for all

For additional details, call 1-800-552-7917 (V/TTY) or visit www.vddhh.org.

Don’t forget to share your VDDHH memories below!

Virginia Relay recently selected Dina Ayad, a student from Douglas S. Freeman High School in Richmond, as Virginia’s recipient of the 2012 Hamilton Relay High School Scholarship. As this year’s winner, Dina receives $500 to use towards her college education.

The scholarship opportunity is available to high school seniors who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind or have difficulty speaking. A recipient is selected within each of the states where Hamilton Relay is the contracted service provider and is one of several ways the company gives back to the communities they serve.

“Hamilton takes pride in promoting education and outstanding leadership across the country,” said Virginia Outreach Coordinator, Marta Cagle, “We are excited to have the opportunity to contribute to furthering Dina’s education and wish her success in reaching her personal and professional goals.”

Dina Ayad was awarded the $500 Hamilton Relay High School Scholarship after completing an application and writing an essay on the topic of communication technology. Dina plans to attend Liberty University in Lynchburg this fall.

Virginia Relay and Hamilton Relay recently announced that Linda Wallace of Richmond is the 2012 recipient of the Hamilton Relay Better Hearing and Speech Month Recognition Award. Each year, the award recognizes an individual for their involvement in their local deaf and hard-of-hearing community.

As president of the Hearing Loss Association of American (HLAA) Greater Richmond Chapter for more than 10 years, Linda is an outstanding advocate for the hearing loss community. Her position as an advisory board member for the NewWell Sensory Fund, as well as a General Assembly advocate allow her to campaign for affordable equipment for all those hearing-impaired, regardless of age or income.

Linda also serves the hard-of-hearing community through education and mentoring. She has taught coping strategies for hearing loss and has served as a presenter and speaker with the Chesterfield County Adult Education program. Through education and peer building, Linda advocates the importance of hearing screenings and other preventative measures to protect hearing.

“In honor of the national celebration of Better Hearing and Speech Month, this award recognizes those individuals who are hard of hearing, late-deafened or have difficulty speaking who have been a strong influence in their state,” said Marta Cagle, Virginia CapTel Outreach Coordinator. “This year, we are happy to celebrate Linda Wallace for her efforts to improve life for those in Virginia’s hard-of-hearing community.”