Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) is a non-profit, self-help Organization dedicated to education, advocacy and support forpeople who do not hear well and those around them
* We are the nation's leading organization representing people with hearing loss.
* As a self-help organization, we assist each other in learning how to adjust to living with hearing loss.
* HLAA is working to eradicate the stigma associated with hearing loss.
* We are raising public awareness about the need for prevention and the importance of regular hearing screening.
* Our advocacy impacts communication access, public policy, research, public awareness, and service delivery.
* Our work at the national office impacts legislation and FCC regulations.
* We provide timely and reliable information through our websites, Hearing Loss Magazine, e-news, the Academy of Hearing Loss Support Specialists, chat forums and our annual convention.
It has been said that because someone invented a wheel, we drive cars. Howard E. "Rocky" Stone, SHHH/HLAA founder, lost his hearing. He began a search to deal with living with hearing loss. He invited friends into his home to discuss their efforts and feelings. Then, in 1979, he incorporated Self-Help for Hard of Hearing People, SHHH (the wheel). Since that time, the organization has grown to an international entity with a worldwide impact. In the United States, we are 14 state organizations and 200 Chapters (the car). He lost his hearing, and we learn to ask what others are doing to cope, share strategies and support each other through programs and social activities.
In 1984 three Kentucky women got together to discuss living with their hearing loss. Eventually, they formed Derbytown SHHH, now known as HLAA-Kentuckiana. Over the years, chapters have developed in Northern Ky., Frankfort and Lexington. However, the Louisville Chapter, Kentuckiana, continues to grow with members from the greater Louisville area, LaGrange, Fort Knox, Springfield, Bardstown, and Edwardsville, New Albany and Salem, Indiana.
In 2009, three HLAA commuters from Bardstown and Springfield decided a chapter was needed closer to home. Becky Crawford, Carlene Ballard and Marilyn Fenwick founded the Kentucky Home Chapter of Hearing Loss Association of America. In that first year, they brought in speakers on Hearing Aids, Tinnitus, Balance and Meniere's Disease, CapTel Telephones, the Telecommunication Assistance Program, The Ky Commission on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Emergency Management for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing and many other topics.
Overall, it is important to realize that we are "you," individuals who have lost some or all of their hearing. We are the families, friends, co-workers and business contacts who are "around" those with a hearing loss. We number 36 million people in the United States who have a hearing loss according to the National Center for Health Statistics. Some 60% of us range in age from 24 to 60. One in five of us are 18 to 24. Nearly 50% of our seniors over 60 have some degree of hearing loss. You are not alone!