From: Denver, CO
“I was born deaf in my right ear, (and) my left ear started as a mild hearing loss (five or so decibel loss) but gradually dropped more over the years as (I) grew up,” said Darnell. “Right after high school, my hearing took a huge drop overnight. I now have a profound hearing loss in my left ear.”
It was at that point that Darnell realized an opportunity to help develop resources for those with hearing difficulties.
“My hearing aid(s) (have supported) me in nearly everything I do, from job interviews to being better able to communicate and speak with friends and family. Having my hearing aid allows me to not only hear them better, but also hear more of my surroundings. This helps me to feel more included instead of isolated in conversations. For music, my hearing aid(s) simply helps me to hear more details of the music. Because of this, I can make better choices on what I want to do with the songs I am creating.”
In addition to working as a music producer and audio recording engineer, Darnell founded H.E.A.R. Me Out, a non-profit organization based in Denver. Standing for Hearing Education and Adult Resources, the organization helps connect adults with hearing loss to various resources to help them overcome challenges, both professional and personal.
According to their website, H.E.A.R. Me Out seeks to “offer a one-stop solution for those with a hearing impairment and businesses seeking to increase their knowledge and access to hearing resources... Through our services, organizations will gain valuable awareness of hearing technology accommodations, compliance issues, and communication methods that can help minimize violations and other potential challenges in their work environment.”
“I have always taken it upon myself to help increase awareness of hearing loss. But even more importantly, I’ve always believed that regardless of any (challenges) we may have, nothing should stop us from pursuing our dreams and achieving our goals. If there is an opportunity to help our hearing, then there is an opportunity to appreciate more of the beauty that this world has to offer.”
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