I recently had the privilege of chatting with Candace Lindow-Davies, who manages a program called MN Hands & Voices in Minneapolis, MN, which is a parent to parent support organization and is meant for parents who recently find out that their new born baby is deaf or hard of hearing.
MN Hands & Voices is a local chapter of Hands & Voices which is in almost every state in the US and is expanding internationally too.
The program’s staff members consist of deaf parents as well and they primarily provide a unique parent perspective which is comforting to new parents to deaf children. They provide a sense of hope, and just reassure that everything’s going to be fine so that parents don’t feel isolated, and understand that lots of people are successful in raising children with hearing loss. But there’s a lot more to it than just that. This is a very interesting conversation, and Candace provides a lot of insights with reference to raising children with deafness. Kiddos grow up to be successful individuals and they have great careers, great marriages, great children!
MN Hands & Voices provides a sense of hope and community to parents, and successfully conveys the message that they are not alone. For parents, it is always comforting to talk to someone else who has done it before. This also helps establish trust and immediate credibility to the support system.
Candace talks about a lot of things, including what MN Hands & Voices does, how they reach out to parents with new borns who are deaf, how this entire process works, how a staff member is aligned to a parent, events for parents amongst other things.
MN Hands & Voices‘ website has a ton of resources of parents. “First Stop” and “Resources & Information” are great starting points.
Website: MN Hands & Voices
Note: I will be adding a transcript to this conversation soon.