Deaf & Hear Alberta Fall 2016 Newsletter

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An Active Autumn

We're celebrating Fall with a variety of programs and initiatives! Read on to learn more about the launch of the Video Relay System, our schedule of upcoming courses, and other information on what's new for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community.
Calendar of Events

October 10

October 14-16
Family Focused ASL Immersion Weekend (@DHA)
October 15
Speechreading: Vowel Sounds and Numbers
October 29
Sounds on the Lips:  W and Wh

November 7
Signing Naturally 102: Calgary 5-week Course begins
November 11
Remembrance Day. (Our offices will be closed)
November 18-20
Family Focused ASL Immersion Weekend (@Providence)

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Our fall session of ASL classes is under way in both Calgary and Edmonton and we are happy to announce that our classes are busier than ever!

Registration is now open for the winter session that begins in January 2017.  Visit our website for complete class listings and to register!  Or email Cindy Pilz for more information.

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There is still space in our speechreading classes this fall.  There are two more sessions before Christmas on October 15 (Vowel Sounds and Numbers) and October 29 (Sounds on the Lips:  W and Wh).  Information and registration is available here or email us.

Also, we now have a book for our next book club!  The book is Deaf Sentence by David Lodge and we will be discussing it on Monday, October 24 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Deaf & Hear Alberta in Calgary.  Please email the address above if you want more information!


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Thank you Allard Foundation!

Deaf & Hear Alberta is happy to share some exciting news with our Edmonton community partners, clients and friends. We are proud to announce that we have recently received a generous grant from the Allard Foundation that will directly support the expansion of our Accessibility Services in Edmonton.  This investment means Deaf & Hear Alberta can say “yes” to more people in need of our Accessibility Services in Edmonton.

The Allard Foundation is a private family foundation which supports charities in Western Canada primarily in Edmonton and Alberta.  The mission of the Allard Foundation is to make Edmonton and Alberta a better place to live. To accomplish this, the Allard Foundation provides funding to advance health, education, family and arts programs.

It was through the vision and the caring of their founder, Dr. Charles Allard, that the foundation today continues to make an enormous and lasting impact on the community.  We want to say thank you to the Allard Foundation for recognizing the value of this growing program and for recognizing and helping Deaf & Hear Alberta to meet the needs of our Edmonton community clients.

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In December 2015 the Emergency Resiliency Fund (ERF) was established by Calgary City Council to help non-profit organizations experiencing higher demands because of the economic downturn.  Deaf & Hear Alberta is one of 38 organizations that has now received funding, so we can help reduce the communication barriers and provide programs and services to more Deaf and hard of hearing Calgarians who have been most affected by the economy.

As well as this, our Deaf Services team will now be able to help a large group of Deaf Syrian refugees in need of specialized services because some of the funds received through the ERF were so Deaf & Hear Alberta could help these new Calgarians and their families to successfully join Canadian society.

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Toyota City in Wetaskiwin is pleased to offer full service at its dealership in American Sign Language. Deaf & Hear Alberta clients and constituents will receive an additional $500 discount in addition to any current promotions or discounts offered by Toyota.  Joanne Link, Product Advisor, will personally stay with each customer from start to finish to properly answer any questions, thus eliminating the need to book an interpreter.

Visit Toyota City today.

Joanne can be reached directly at the contact information below:
(Facebook as well)
Tel: 780-352-2225
Cell: 780-264-6957

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Exciting news for the Deaf community!

Canada’s first-ever national Video Relay Service (VRS) was launched on Wednesday, September 28, 2016!

What is Video Relay Service?  Video Relay Service (VRS) enables Deaf and Hard of Hearing people to connect with voice telephone users via video over the Internet. VRS calls occur with the help of Video interpreters who interpret the conversation back and forth between callers using sign language with the VRS user, and voice with the called party.  VRS can be accessed from smartphones, tablets, laptops, and computers.  Find more information at  

If you are wanting to access the services, you will need to register to receive your 10 digit personal code. Be sure to check the website above for further information on how to register and get your code.

Rytch Newmiller and Cindy Pilz can help you to understand the service if you have any questions or are unsure.

Also, Deaf & Hear Alberta will have VRS on-site if you do not have access to a VRS device. We will make an announcement once our VRS is set up.

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Deaf & Hear Alberta has now expanded our Accessibility Services Program to offer local services to the Edmonton community.

Deaf & Hear Alberta promotes full participation by Deaf and hard of hearing individuals in their communities and in society. Communication access, services and technology will now be more readily available to our clients in Edmonton for their daily living activities through the establishment of a local Accessibility Services Program in Edmonton.

We are happy to introduce our new Accessibility Services Coordinator in our Edmonton office: Rebecca Doole.  Rebecca has begun serving our Edmonton clients; her office hours are Monday to Thursday 9:00 am - 3:00 pm. She can be reached by phone at 587-400-9602, by email, or toll-free at 1-866-471-2805 extension 221.

Because of Edmonton Community Foundation's investment, we were successful in leveraging more funding from the Allard Foundation, to keep this service moving forward for our Edmonton community.  You can read more about their funding in the next article.  

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Many thank you to our clients and supporters, as well as our community neighbours, for participating in our bottle drive and barbeque on September 17!  Thanks to everyone’s participation we are happy to report that we raised just over $1200!  Thank you also to all our volunteers, including the volunteers from Youth Central Calgary.  THANK YOU TO ALL!

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It will soon be the giving season once again and Deaf & Hear Alberta is looking ahead to our Adopt-a-Family program.  This year we will be adopting families from Syria to whom we have been providing services and supports as they settle in Canada.  

Keep an eye on our website and future emails for information on how you can help!  We will be seeking donations of gifts, clothing, or household items, or you can donate gift cards.  We will have more information soon or contact Cindy if you have any questions.

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We are proud to have attended the United Way fall Kickoff on September 15. Deaf & Hear Alberta is proud to have been the provider of interpreting services for the event.  Remember that if your workplace is doing a United Way drive this fall, you can direct your donation to Deaf & Hear Alberta!

Copyright © 2016 Deaf & Hear Alberta.  All rights reserved.

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63 Cornell Road NW, Calgary AB, T2L 0L4

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