CHHA National welcomed two incredible summer students to the team, Sarah Campbell and Sydney Moulton, this past summer. Gordana Mosher, CHHA National Accessibility & Communications Manager, asked both Sarah and Sydney to share their experiences during their time at CHHA.
What were the most important things we learned working for CHHA over the summer?
Sarah & Sydney: Working for CHHA over the summer has given us the opportunity to look at the hard of hearing community in a different perspective. For those who are having difficulty hearing and seek help, hearing care professionals are there to test and find a solution, usually resulting in hearing aids or cochlear implants. But what happens when this person who was fitted with incredible new technology is immersed back into the public and resumes regular, everyday life?
At CHHA, their focus is to create a space that is accessible and easy to navigate for people with hearing loss. The work done in the clinic and the ever-advancing hearing technology are amazing steps to a better-quality hearing life, but it was eye opening to see how much more work there is to do. Working here has allowed us to engage with the hard of hearing community and only begin to understand how many communication barriers are faced every day. It has inspired us to continue advocating for the removal of these barriers in our lives outside of CHHA.
What were your favourite projects that we worked on this summer?
Sarah: I was excited to be a part of the communications team over the past few months, and play a role in bringing awareness to and educating the public of what can be done to further create these accessible spaces for a community of people I care so deeply about. I enjoyed being able to promote hearing healthcare in a creative way on CHHA’s social media platforms, and connect the community with the projects CHHA has created in order to improve accessibility for all Canadians through CHHA’s iListen newsletters.
Sydney: I really enjoyed working on the Get in the Hearing Loop campaign this summer. It has allowed me to connect with businesses and organizations around Ottawa and advocate for accessible technology that ensures everyone can enjoy equal services. Working on this campaign has expanded my perspective on accessibility and inclusivity, and I’ve loved being able to share those important principles with spaces in my community.
What was the best thing about working for CHHA?
Whether it is the Get in the Hearing Loop Campaign creating inclusive hearing in public venues, the Employment Access Framework project pushing for better accessibility in the workplace or the Disability Connect project implementing resources for better travel, all of the work done at CHHA is advocating for a more accessible space for the hard of hearing community, and everyone at CHHA is so incredibly passionate about ensuring this is achieved. It is amazing to work in a place where everyone cares so deeply about accessibility and is willing to learn and adapt to advocate for better services for people with hearing loss. From the members to staff, the CHHA Networks to the National Office, thank you for doing what you do, and for playing a key role in improving the lives of hard of hearing individuals every day!
We would like to thank Sarah and Sydney for all their incredible work during their time at CHHA National. Wishing them all the best in their future careers.
In case you missed it check out some incredible podcasts from past CHHA summer students Catherine, Jason and Kaelan created.
Speak Up Series https://www.chha.ca/resources/speak-up-podcast/