Fri, 04 Aug 2017 08:01:05 EST
So, I’ve been writing about my experiences with HearStrong, but I haven’t discussed our roles as HearStrong Champions! Champions are incredibly important for HearStrong’s growth, and we truly have the power to create great change. Pretty awesome, right?
But... after you get your medal and snap a few pictures in your new HearStrong t-shirt, what’s next?
As Champions, it’s our job to challenge society’s perception of hearing loss and hearing technology.
80 percent of Americans who could benefit from using hearing technology choose not to. We have the opportunity to educate others about what hearing loss is, what hearing healthcare options are out there, and the importance of hearing health starting at an early age.
Here’s something to think about. What if we looked at treating hearing loss the way we look at correcting vision?
20/20 vision is something we all understand. If you have poor sight, you can correct it with glasses, contacts, or eye surgery.
With hearing loss, it’s a bit different. There isn’t anything to compare “perfect hearing” to or a concept of “20/20 hearing.” Many people choose not to seek treatment due to negative stigmas, cost, and lack of education and awareness. Therefore, people tend to just deal with it.
HearStrong Champions don’t “deal with it” - we overcome it and follow our dreams. Our hearing isn’t perfect, but it’s ours.
In our everyday lives, we show the world that hearing loss isn’t a barrier. We are motivated to prove to others (and ourselves) that our hearing loss or deafness does not limit us in any way.
Our stories serve as inspirations, and that’s why we’ve been selected to take on this challenge! We can empower others to seek treatment and change their lives, and ultimately change the face of hearing loss.
This is an important responsibility, and there are many things we can do to make it come to life.
Advocacy involves bringing awareness to hearing loss in general. It’s all about believing in HearStrong’s mission, speaking out, and making sure you are personally receiving everything you need to succeed!
Educating others about hearing loss is integral to our role. This can include speaking at your school, workplace, or in your community, sharing articles online, or having important conversations with others.
Volunteering could including helping to change local legislation, hosting or participating in a fundraiser, or nominating a deserving person you know to be a HearStrong Champion.
Taking action is about being a strong advocate for yourself and others, creating events, and helping build the HearStrong community.
We’ll talk about these in more detail in future blog posts, but here’s something you can do right now:
Each HearStrong Champion is unique. Some have hearing aids, cochlear implants, or fluently sign in ASL- we’re a diverse group of people with many talents and passions! How we hear or how well we hear isn’t as important as how we persevere and overcome our challenges.
To continue your role as a Champion, I challenge you to submit your own blog post ideas to HearStrong! Send ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org. These can include topics such as hearing loss, hearing amplification devices, or anything else. But most importantly, we want to hear your personal story.
If you’re not a writer or someone who writes often, that’s okay! We have a staff of wonderful editors that can work with you to craft a piece that will capture your unique voice.
If you can’t already tell, I’ve become incredibly passionate about HearStrong and its mission. I believe that together we can make a difference and I am excited for you to get involved!
Reach out to us email@example.com to get started!
Until next time, stay rad!
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A HearStrong Champion is an individual who refuses to let their hearing loss stand in the way of living a successful, well-rounded life. If this sounds like you or someone you know nominate them today!
HearStrong champions serve as a role model to empower the 80% of people with hearing loss who have yet to seek assistance and motivate them to take control of their hearing health. Find out more about each of their inspirational stories!
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