June 2018

  1. Expo

Our 2nd Healthy Hearing Expo on February 3 was a big success, as we attracted 275 people with 97 taking advantage of the free hearing aid trials, only the second time in the US that this has been done. We are most grateful for the 11 of you board members who got your organizations to exhibit at the event, as well as the six of you who promoted it to your patients and contacts.  Thank you! Both the consumers and 42 exhibitors present rated the event very highly in our two surveys encouraging us to do another event, which is tentatively set for Saturday. February 2, 2019.

However, our 2019 Expo is looking for a new home if you have any suggestions, as we outgrew the church in Brandon. We need a hall that fits at least 45 exhibitors and has 5 or more nearby rooms. The ideal location would be in Tampa and would appreciate any suggestions or leads you might have.

  1. Speakers Needed

All three chapters have openings for speakers at many of the monthly meetings from September to May. We will consider your education topics and are very interested in having someone address of the following topics as well:

  • What’s New In Wireless Accessories 
  • Communication Strategies for Noisy Situations
  •  The Latest in Hearing Aid Devices
  • Tinnitus: Causes & Treatment
  • Ototoxic Drugs       
  • How to Get More Out of Visit to a Hearing Aid Professional
  • Balance Disorders: Causes & Treatment
  • Hearing Allergies: Causes & Treatments
  1. Volunteers Wanted Our chapters are run by all volunteers and with two of the three chapters having new presidents, they could use more support. For our hearing care professional Advisory Board members, we would welcome any of your patients looking to do more in the community as our chapters have openings in various capacities.  There is an introductory volunteer meeting and training session for all interested on Saturday, July 7 at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church in Sun City Center at 9 AM. And for our other Advisory Board members, you all have contacts with management, marketing and financial skills, who would be welcomed to the chapter boards. A very special thank you to new Advisory Board member, Vicente Lopez of Sun City Center Men’s Club who has volunteered to share his management skills with the HLAA Sun City Center board.


  1. Summer Caption Movie Program

All three chapters are jointly collaborating for our “Private Eyes” captioned movie socials at the Regal Cinema at the Citrus Park Mall in Tampa for the third consecutive summer. The June 9 event drew 10 people with four first-timers and we were treated to a private theatre to see Ocean’s 8 with open captions (OC). Our special thanks to GM Warren Peck and his Regal staff for their support.

There are two more movie socials, Saturday, July 21 and August 11 and anyone in the community is welcome to join us. This is a great event to suggest to a patient or contact who is looking to get out into the community more and to learn about all the access systems in the community. We do a movie in the noon to 1 PM time frame followed by lunch at BJ’s Restaurant in the Mall. Our Private Eyes club name refers to the Sony Captioned Glasses, which are free at all movies. For one of your contacts to reserve a pair of glasses, they need to contact Debbe Hagner at debbe.hagner@gmail.com.

  1. Chapters to Expand Social Activities When people first start coming to our open-house HLAA meetings, they find the informational and educational support that we provide to be their primary reason. However it is usually social support, connecting with other members with whom they share common issues or interests, that becomes the most influentialreason they become long-term members. The three chapters plan to collaborate on more social events this coming 2018-2019 season, starting with an HLAA Happy Hour on Friday, October 19 at T.G.I. Friday’s in Tampa from 5 to 7 PM. I hope you can join us to socialize and network with the chapter and your fellow board members.


  1. New Family Support Group

As with alcoholism, hearing loss affects everyone, especially spouses. Hearing loss can greatly affect communications with spouses, other family members and friends. Taking a page out of the AA playbook, where an AA and Al-anon are often among the top 10 biggest groups in a community, our three chapters are going to explore how to best provide a family support group that would meet periodically and separately from the regular chapter meetings. The concept will be pilot tested — in conjunction with the Sarasota Chapter – – at the 7th Annual Hearing Tech Expo in Bradenton on Saturday, October 27. This event is the biggest consumer hearing event in Florida with over 50 exhibitors. It is also offering several major firsts this year, including several breakthrough technologies making their debuts in Florida, a clinic offering free hearing aid trials, a new children’s support program and Spanish translations in the exhibit hall and workshops to serve the Hispanic community. (see attached flyer)

  1. Community Presentation

We have a custom presentation that introduces all the basic hearing devices, accessory options, community access systems and resources available in a specific city called 10 Smart Ways To Improve Your Hearing in Tampa (or your city). It has been given to Sertoma and Rotary Clubs as well as community residences and we are pleased to offer it to any organization, which has interest.

  1. Advisory Board Roster Please welcome new board member, Rae Cantwell, the president elect of the Sun City Rotary Club and the aforementioned Vicente Lopez of the Sun City Center Men’s Club to our Advisory Board. We are always looking for new members and welcome any recommendations you might have.

 For any feedback or questions, contact Ed Ogiba at 941-706-4312 or hlaahelp@gmail.com.

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Hearing Loss Association of Florida

The Hearing Loss Association of Florida, Inc. (HLAA-FL), a Voluntary non-profit organization, is dedicated to the well-being of the more than 3-million Floridians of all ages and communication styles with hearing loss.

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