of

The Power

Parent-to-Parent Support

Guide By Your Side Logo is a set of three hands in various shades of black and grey with a cochlea

Every family who has a child who is deaf or hard of hearing has a different story to tell, yet we all share a common bond. At Hands & Voices, we understand the power of parents coming together to support and learn from one another. Families who are just beginning the journey can learn from veteran parents about the challenges as well as the joys of raising a child who is deaf or hard of hearing. For many parents, their only regret in the early years is not connecting with other parents sooner!

Orange Clouds
Signed Story Time
Dads Night
Family Social Events
Family Social Events
Parents Night
Field Trips
Learning Opportunities
Supportive Connections
Social Opportunities
Social Opportunities
Advocacy
Lasting Friendships
Family Events
Lasting Friendships
Fun Playdates
All Ages Welcome!
Moms Only Events
Dads are Welcome too!
Raising Leaders
Moms Only Events

What the GBYS Program can do for parents

Advocacy & Support

The Hands & Voices Parent Guide is a parent of a deaf or hard of hearing child who has been trained to provide support and advocacy for other families. Our guides have real life experience in raising a deaf/hh child, and are knowledgeable about the issues encompassing this journey. These guides are available to respond to the individual needs of each family and can utilize a whole network of H&V chapters across the country and outside its borders as needed

Connections

We’re here for you when YOU are ready! One-on-one consultation via phone, technology, or home visit on the topics you want to discuss, such as communication options, emotional support, educational choices, sibling and extended family issues, transition to preschool, where to find a pediatric audiologist or sign classes, etc. Some families do not know where to start, a Parent Guide can assist you in this journey.

Resources

Our parent guides can connect you to: -Practical resources: State and national resources; materials; recommended books, videos, websites, on a variety of topics from Deaf culture to language development, from bullying concerns to learning to swim and to drive. -Regional events, access to other families, access to deaf/hh adults, educational workshops. -Information and direction on IFSP and IEP development, Special education law information, navigating your community. -Coordinators specifically for parents who are Spanish speaking, and for families who have kids with unilateral hearing loss, “deaf plus” issues like autism and Down syndrome and more. -An experienced parent who can support you in understanding the unique needs of your child in the context of your family in this often unexpected journey.

The Guide By Your Side (GBYS) program is funded through generous grants from the Nebraska Department of Education and the Nebraska Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (EHDI) program.

 

Meet our Parent Guides

Shelli Janning

Shelli Janning

Program Coordinator, Parent Guide

Experience with:

Unilateral Hearing difference, Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants

Diana Aguilar

Diana Aguilar

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Bilateral hearing difference, Spanish speaking, Cochlear Implants, Autism, ADHD

Erin Dunn

Erin Dunn

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Bilateral Hearing difference, Hearing Aids

Gabby Meza

Gabby Meza

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Bilateral deafness, Spanish speaking, Deaf-Plus, Usher's Syndrome

Jamie Wieseler

Jamie Wieseler

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Bilateral hearing loss, Cochlear Implants

Jessica Hoss

Jessica Hoss

Outreach Coordinator, Parent Guide

Experience with:

Bilateral hearing difference, Cochlear Implants

Jenessa Cruz-Alfaro

Jenessa Cruz-Alfaro

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Unilateral hearing difference, Cochlear Implants, Hearing Aids, cCMV

Erin Jelinek

Erin Jelinek

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Bilateral hearing difference, Cochlear Implants, Sign Language

Missy Stithem

Missy Stithem

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Bilateral hearing difference, Cochlear Implants

Jennifer Zysset

Jennifer Zysset

H&V Executive Assistant, Parent Guide

Experience with:

Bilateral hearing difference, Hearing Aids

Christy Davis

Christy Davis

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Unilateral hearing difference

Kelsey Maas

Kelsey Maas

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Unilateral hearing difference, Microtia/Atresia, Bone Conduction Hearing Aids

Becca Vach

Becca Vach

Parent Guide

Experience with:

Bilateral hearing difference, Hearing Aids