Title: 'Supporting Families of Children with Unilateral Hearing Loss'
Track: 8-Program Evaluation and Quality Assurance
Audience: Primary Audience: Family of a child with hearing loss
Secondary Audience: Early Intervention Provider
Tertiary Audeince: Part C Agency/Program
Keyword(s): Unilateral hearing loss, family support
Learning Objectives: better understand the needs of families of children with unilateral hearing loss and be better equipped to support them in various meaningful ways.


Families of children with unilateral hearing loss often receive mixed messages as to what is the best course of treatment for their children. Some practitioners recommend regular hearing tests and others don't. Some suggest hearing aids and other never mention them. There seems to be a lack of a universal standard of care for UHL kids. As parents of children with unilateral hearing loss/atresia and advocates for families of children with UHL, Chresta Brinkman and Lyn Bopp will present on supporting the needs of children with UHL. Some of the topics covered will include early intervention and the influence of support and follow-up on future academic success, navigating systems, accessing medical services and qualifying for Part C intervention, availability of hearing aids, support at school, IEPs and 504 plans, and getting families of UHL kids in touch with each other for social/emotional support. In this session we will be discussing our personal experiences as well as those of whom we've supported. We will welcome questions and discussion of any topic related to unilateral hearing loss and/or atresia and hope that we can foster improved support of these children who commonly fall through the cracks.
Presentation(s): Not Available
Handouts: Not Available
Lyn Bopp - Hands & Voices
      I am a Guide-by-your-side parent advocate with Colorado Families for Hands & Voices. My son was born thirteen years ago with unilateral mirotia/atresia. He has a severe hearing loss in his right ear. I have worked as a parent advocate for Hands and Voices since 2001. I help parents of children with UHL connect with other families, find information, locate providers, communicate with educators, get services, and I also provide general emotional support as needed.
Chresta Brinkman - Colorado Hands & Voices
     Credentials: MA Moderate Needs Special Education
     Other Affiliations: Colorado H&V Statewide Unilateral Hearing Loss Guide By Your Side
      Chresta attended the University of Kansas and graduated in 1997 with a Liberal Arts Degree in Psychology. In 2000 she attended the University of Northern Colorado where she earned her M.A. in Moderate Needs Special Education and completed various coursework in Early Childhood Special Education. She began a program for elementary aged children who have Emotional Disabilities as well as Pervasive Developmental Disorders. She continued to pursue further coursework from UNC in Severe Affective Special Education. Upon having her first child, she decided to work from home and in 2006 she had her second child, a son, who was born with Goldenhar Syndrome. He presented with Hemifacial Mircosomia and Torticollis. She connected with various resources family and became a strong advocate for her son. In 2008 she had their third child and in 2009 she became a Statewide UHL Parent Guide by Your Side for Colorado Hands & Voices.