Improve Hearing Accessibility During Events
Events and event venues often present challenging listening environments to persons with hearing loss. This is due to a variety of factors, including increased distance between the person and the speaker, excessive background noise, and the venue not having enough lighting. This article will give you ways to improve hearing accessibility during events and become a leader in your community.
FACTS ABOUT HEARING LOSS
- Speaking loudly or using a microphone may not be enough for a person with hearing loss to understand.
- Hearing aids are only designed to optimize speech within 3 feet and can only do so much to help a person hear in their environment. This makes the availability of other supports, such as a group listening system important.
- Hearing loss makes speech sound distorted or muffled. This makes conversations more difficult to understand, especially in environments with lots of background noise.
- Larger spaces, especially those with high ceilings create echos and background noise. This often results in a challenging listening environment, even for a person without a hearing loss.
HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT YOUR PARTICIPANTS
- Use A Group Listening System: Connect a group listening system to an existing soundboard. You can loan one from CHHA-NL or apply for the Hearing Accessibility Program.
- Provide Captioning/CART: Captioning (CART), is a great way of improving accessibility at your event, as it is the process of transcribing real-time spoken word to text, allowing all of your participants to follow along.
- Provide Good Lighting: Ensure space is well lit to allow members to speech (lip) read.
- Reduce Noise: Be aware of background or ambient noise that may affect the acoustics of the space. Providing acoustic treatments if necessary, and decreasing the amount of noise wherever possible is a great way to reduce excess noise.
HOW CAN WE HELP?
- CHHA-NL provides a Public Accessibility Program for community organizations, charity groups, places of worship, and other places that provide public meeting spaces.
- The public accessibility fund provides hearing assistive technology for non- profits and registered charities to allow for greater accessibility in public spaces.
- CHHA-NL also provides advice on other ways to support those with hearing loss in your community. We can also provide communication tips to help you stay connected with your congregation.
ACCESSIBILITY PROGRAM FOR PUBLIC ORGANIZATIONS
CHHA-NL provides financial assistance for hearing accessible listening systems for:
- Places of worship
- Public organizations
- Charity groups
- Community organizations
- Other organizations which provide public use or meeting space(s)
More details & information can be found on the Public Accessibility Program Application.
If you are interested in learning more about how to improve hearing accessibility, contact us today, or visit our accessibility page.