International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.
The Canadian Hard of Hearing Association has many members worthy of recognition for their accomplishments in these areas, while living with significant hearing loss.
This year, we are proud to profile two such members, Myrtle Barrett and Kim Scott.
Myrtle Barrett, President of the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association, does not allow her hearing loss to define who she is. Born with hearing loss, Myrtle acquired her first hearing aid at age16 and received a cochlear implant four years ago.
A graduate with a Bachelor of Social Work degree, Myrtle joined the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association in its infancy. She has been active at all levels of the organization – as past President of CHHA Newfoundland and Labrador and is now the President of CHHA National. She has become an internationally respected advocate for people with hearing loss.
Myrtle has served on many access committees and has a passion for working with youth and young adults with hearing loss. She has spearheaded initiatives aimed at helping them become strong self-advocates and future leaders in their communities.
Myrtle is committed to positioning CHHA as an organization that will reach and support Canadian affected by hearing loss, making them aware of the services and resources available to them to help live successfully with their communication challenges.
Kim Scott was born and raised with a progressive bilateral sensorineural hearing loss. She studied respiratory therapy but was forced to abandon her career when she became deafened at the age of 26. She received a cochlear implant in 1995. Kim is the Executive Director of the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association, Sudbury Branch having previously served president of the Branch for over five years.
When Kim first became President of CHHA Sudbury, the Branch was struggling with several problems common to many charities (no funding, dwindling membership, stagnation and lack of progress). With little experience in charity work and through numerous stumbles, failures and successes, Kim has helped the Sudbury Branch to develop strong community partnerships, financial sustainability and improved the public profile of CHHA and hearing loss issues. Today, the Sudbury Branch of the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association provides numerous new programs and supports to the hard of hearing and deafened across Northeastern Ontario. Some of these supports include the Hear Now! Fund, aural rehabilitation workshops (speechreading, living with tinnitus, learning how to hear with a cochlear implant, etc.), ALDs lending library, print interpretation and community outreach.
Kim’s involvement with the National Speechreading Program has also highlighted her dedication to advancing accessibility and promoting new resources available to people living with hearing loss. Her tireless efforts to develop the Let’s Talk curriculum, and provide exemplary training to new speechreading instructors has been of tremendous assistance to CHHA’s many Chapters, Branches and the National office.
For media contacts:
Glenn Martin, CAE
National Executive Director