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NCHAM: National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management, Utah State University

Establishing a Sound Foundation for Children Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing

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I've just viewed a video of your talk at this year's TEDxUSU and was again inspired by your and other's work in the field of early detection.

It is so incredibly sad how little the general public knows about deafness and deaf awareness. I'm from South Africa and it's also a major challenge for supporters of the cause here.

I was (probably) born almost completely deaf, and my wonderful parents only realised this when I was supposed to start speaking. Because the technology in our country did not at the time provide for early detection methods, they could only confirm my deafness at age three.

Nevertheless my parents acquired every bit of knowledge they could and pushed me extremely hard so that I could attend normal mainstream schools. Thanks to them I never felt disabled a day in my life and graduated high school with distinctions in all my subjects and then went on to obtain my BA degree in language and literature studies and also my honours degree in Afrikaans (my first language) and Dutch literature studies. I'm now 25, happily married and assistant editor at one of South Africa's leading websites.

I'm writing all this to show you that your efforts can not in any way be in vain. I'm positive that many parents are benefiting from your tireless campaign to help the world's deaf children.

So thank you for the noble and honourable work you're doing.

Posted by: Maggie Marx, 12/18/12