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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

NWAAD Fish Fry Saturday 9/14/13

Something Fishy is going on with NWA Association for the Deaf! Let's follow our noses and see what the Big Catch is all about!!!

Northwest Arkansas Association of the Deaf is having a Fish Fry Saturday, September 14th at John Powell Senior Center, Springdale, Arkansas at 6 pm. 

For our special feature we will have someone from Sign Language Interpreting Network, LLC to speak to us about the new Interpreter Laws that recently passed in Arkansas.


Check out some other websites about interpreter networks around the world.




Arkansas Sign Language Offered in High Schools...Yeah...

Deaf Awareness Day at Silver Dollar City 9/7/13

Don't forget the ALL DEAF & HARD OF HEARING DAY at Silver Dollar City on Saturday, September 7, 2013.
 Its going to be fun, FuN, fUN, and more FUN!! Bring the family, bring the kids, bring the Dog, bring the Pigs allowed! Humm..not sure if dogs are allowed, but if its a service Dog, go ahead and bring um!!! 
For more info and ride details for children, please check out the website at:

See ya at the Silver City!!!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Arkansas Hands & Voices "Back to School Bash" Thursday, August 8, 2013 6-8 pm

YDHAT invites other groups to the BASEBALL GAMES on Saturday August 17, 2013 at 7pm

Hey Kids and Parents, it’s back to SCHOOL TIME!!!

YDHAT, EBONY KIDS, NWAAD, BBD, SELA, NWADBC & DWELLING PLACE CHURCH…you are all invited! Let’s go the Baseball Game!

On Saturday, August 17, 2013 at 7:00 pm, please come and hang out with friends and family at the games. We are holding ONLY 50 tickets for the group.  Your tickets are discounted for $7, and must be paid by August 8, 2013 in order to hold your spot. 

You can email me at or call me at 901-340-1966 for a time arrangement to meet to pay for your ticket.
Also, you can get discounts on your food if you pay in advance. Look under the Group Rates and Discounts in the attachment for more information.

It’s back to school time, which means it would be great to mingle with friends and family. So, come on out and enjoy a night out with the kids while watching America’s Favorite Pastime!

See ya at the Games!! 

Groups in detail:
YDHAT (Young Deaf & Hard of Hearing Awareness Team), Ebony Kids (African American Children's group in NWA), NWAAD (Northwest Arkansas Association for the Deaf), BBD (Black Business Directory), SELA (Springdale Early Learning Academy, NWADBC (Northwest Arkansas Democratic Black Caucus & Dwelling Place Children's Church.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Importance of Literacy- A Panel Discussion

Come out and enjoy an Evening with Poets, Authors, Educators and Parents as we discuss issues that are related to literacy in the Minority Communities. Minority Book Authors will be available for book signing and recognition of our Young Literacy Winners will be recognized. Panel will be on Thursday, August 8, at 6:30 pm- 9:30 PM. Please come and show your support. Thanks!

Book Drive for Literacy

“tEAcH mE hOw tO rEAd”
Book Drive

Northwest Arkansas Democratic Black Caucus, Umoja Soul Writers Group and Ebony Kids of NWA are hosting a Book Drive from June 10, 2013 to August 10, 2013.

We would like you to participate by bringing your old or new Multicultural and/or Bilingual Books to the following drop off locations below. If you would like to purchase new books, or make a donation to support the Teach Me How to Read Literacy Campaign, please donate to Ebony Kids of Northwest Arkansas, 3805 Legacy Lane, Rogers AR 72758.

For more information for the Book Drive, please contact Terri Walker at, 512-694-8286 or Leora Jackson at, 901-340-1966

Book Drop Locations:

Trendsetters 1617 N College Ave, Suite B Fayetteville, AR 72703, 479-966-4247, House of Styles Hair Salon, 219 S. Main St, Bentonville AR 72712, 479-254-9116, Skillz Unlimited, 2200 W. Sunset Ave, Suite A6, Springdale, AR 72763, 479-756-8900, Melo Cutz, 902 SW 2nd St Suite A, Bentonville AR 72712, 479-283-7496, Dominion Hair Salon, 2387 N. Green Acres Rd, Fayetteville, AR 72703, 479-287-4743, Purple Reign, 2340 N. Green Acres Rd, Fayetteville, AR 72703, 479-442-4064

"tEAcH mE hOw tO rEAd" Literacy Contest Saturday, July 27, 2013

“Teach me how to read….”
Literacy Contest

Open to All Minorities in these Age groups
7-9, 10-13, 14-17
Participants in the above age groups will write a 1-2 page essay, poem, or story entitled “Teach me how to read…” in which they describe (from their point of view) the importance and benefits of reading.
1 page, double spaced for age groups 7-9 & 10-13. 2 pages, double spaced for ages 14-17.

Individuals 18 and up are allowed to participate in the contest through Poetry, Monologue, Rap/Song or Dramatic Expression.
Individuals will perform a 1-3 minute presentation

The contest will be held on Saturday July 27, 2013 from 1-3 pm at the Jones Center for Families in the Auditorium
Winners in each age division will read their work at the Literacy Panel on Thursday August 8, 2013 at 6:30-8:30pm at Ozarks Electric in Fayetteville, AR. Winners & participants will receive certificates and prizes for participating. 

Please complete the Entry Form for more information about the event.

This event is sponsored by the Umoja Soul Writers Group, Northwest Arkansas Democratic Black Caucus, Ebony Kids of NWA and the Black Business Directory.
For more information about the Literacy Contest, please contact Leora Jackson at  or call 901-340-1966.

“Teach me how to read….”
2013 Literacy Essay/Performance Contest
Students: Attach this completed entry form to your essay. Keep a copy of your essay and this entry form for your records.
Please put your name on all pages of your essay.

STUDENT NAME:____________________________________ Age:____ Grade ____
                                                (First)                                                      (Last)
ADDRESS:____________________________________________________________                                                                       Number                                                          Street                                                                                                             Zip
HOME PHONE: (____)________________________________________________________________
EMAIL address: ______________________________________________________________________
SCHOOL: ____________________________________

Essays must be typed and double spaced; Age Groups 7-9 & 10-13 may be typed or written legibly in ink. Age Group 14-17 must be typed and double spaced.  All entries will be judged on originality and focus on the selected prompt by a panel of community members. Students must write an essay, poem, or story entitled “Teach me how to read…” in which they describe (from their point of view) the importance and benefits of reading. 

Individuals 18 and up are allowed to participate in the contest through Poetry, Monologue, Rap/Song or Dramatic Expression.  Individuals will perform a 1-3 minute presentation to be judged on Physical Presence, Voice & Articulation, Dramatic Appropriateness, Level of Difficulty, and Evidence of Understanding.

Each Age Group Category will have up to 2 winners depending on the number of entries. The winner from each age group will have their paper read at the Literacy Panel on Thursday, August 7, 2013 from 6:30-8:30 pm at Ozark Electric, 3641 W Wedington Dr, Fayetteville, AR 72704

Prizes: Cash Prizes up to $150 for winners in each age group, $50 Gift Certificate for 2nd place, Books & Literacy Souvenirs to all participants.

Suggested maximum length:
Ages 7-9 & 10-13: Suggested Maximum 250 words; 12 pt. size type
Ages 14-17: Suggested Maximum 700 words; 12 pt. size type

We certify that this entry is a new original work and was developed and written by the student.
We give permission for the writer’s essay and picture to be reproduced for promotional purposes including publication in the news media. We understand that the objective of this contest is student recognition and that there is no compensation beyond the prizes mentioned.

STUDENT SIGNATURE:________________________________________________________

PARENT SIGNATURE:_________________________________________________________

To be officially entered, all signatures must be complete when the entry is received.

The DEADLINE for receipt of entries at the Jones Center is:
1:00 PM Saturday, July 27, 2013.

Individuals can mail their essays & Entry Form to: Ebony Kids of Northwest Arkansas, 3805 Legacy Lane, Rogers AR 72758.

QUESTIONS CALL: For more information about the Literacy Contest, please contact Leora Jackson at  or call 901-340-1966.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Greetings from Arkansas School for the Deaf

Arkansas School for the Deaf;

I would like to invite each of you to consider becoming involved in the Arkansas Hands and Voices Chapter.  They are having a board meeting next week on Thursday, May 16th at 4:30 in the UALR Kaiser Board Room on the UAMS/UALR campus.  This organization is an unbiased support organization for families and professionals who have children who are deaf or hard of hearing.  Their philosophy is to offer unbiased support for families and our Arkansas chapter has been growing.  The chapter is ready to take on a chapter coordinator now that they are more financially stable, and yet we still have a long way to go.

One of the missing links in the Arkansas organization is to have more representatives from Deaf Adults and families that sign.  Currently Jeff Prail is the only board member representing this path, and it is important for the organization to be unbiased to have more representatives from the signing community and deaf culture there who can participate without bias.    So I invite you to consider becoming a part with this organization.  Even if you are not interested in serving on the board, next Thursday will give you an opportunity to learn about their unbiased philosophy by participating in the meeting for the first hour.   The first part of the meeting is open to anyone interested in becoming more involved.  

If you live outside the central part of the state and want to participate in this meeting they are Skyping into the meeting for the NORTHWEST ARK corner.  This is a possibility for those in other areas of the state as well, it will just take some organization.  I will help with this if anyone from another area is interested, such as the providers and families from the northeast corner of the state. However, please contact me as soon as possible so I can organize this for you. 
Please forward this to anyone you feel would bring some valuable insight into this organization and invite them to join the meeting.
Thanks for considering this.  ASL interpreters will be available.

Karen Howard
Early Intervention Specialist
Arkansas School for the Deaf
Arkansas Children's Hospital-

Hello all,

In case you have not heard, there are some big changes coming up for Arkansas Hands and Voices which will mean even more opportunities to provide support for families who have children with hearing loss. If you are interested in attending the meeting in Northwest Arkansas, please let me know as I am coordinating the space for that event.

If interpreting services are needed, please let me know by
Friday, May 10th at 2:00 pm.
You are welcome to call/text 479-841-5264 or email

Please see the email below for more information. Hope to see you thereJ

Looking forward to a great meeting!!
Rachel Glade, M.S., CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert. AVT
Speech-Language Pathologist
Certified Auditory Verbal Therapist

Northwest Arkansas Hearing Impaired Program
University of Arkansas Speech and Hearing Clinic
606 N. Razorback Road| Fayetteville, AR 72701
479.841.5264 direct | 479.575.4509  clinic front office | 479.575.4507 fax

Arkansas Children's Hospital
1 Children’s Way | Slot 113 | Little Rock, AR 72202
479.841.5264 direct | 501.364.7843 office | 501.364.6646 fax

Arkansas Hands and Voices News

Dear Arkansas Hands & Voices,

Recently the Arkansas Hands & Voices Board of Directors had the opportunity for a weekend long training with the Executive Director of Hands & Voices Headquarters, Janet DesGeorges, and H&V HQ board member Helen Leiser. It was a great meeting that provided wonderful training for our group and our board came away re-energized and ready to continue strengthening our Arkansas Hands & Voices chapter. One of the ways we want to do that is to provide opportunities for people to learn more about what H&V represents.  

We want to invite everyone to come next Thursday, May 16th at 4:30 pm to learn more about one of the core values of H&V - "Supporting Families without Bias." We will be showing a captioned training video by Janet DesGeorges that will help us learn more about what that means. This meeting will be from 4:30 pm - 5:45 pm at the UALR Speech and Hearing Clinic. There will be no childcare or dinner provided. There will be ASL interpreters there for the meeting.

A second action item that came out of our training is that we voted to hire a Chapter Coordinator for our chapter. Our board is VERY excited about this decision. The position will start July 1, 2013. The job description is attached. Interested applicants should submit cover letter and resume by June 1, 2013 to - 
Sharon Ross
Phone: 501-733-2975   

Thanks for all that you do to make Arkansas Hands & Voices a great group supporting all families who have children who are deaf or hard of hearing!

Mandy McClellan
EHDI Annual Meeting Coordinator



"Come on, ride the train, it's the choo choo train
Ride it, woo woo
Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah -If you feel like dancing, well come on, it's up to you
We got the sound to keep you getting down, down
The train is coming through…….."

Saturday, May 4, 2013

      Well, the 2nd Annual YDHAT Train Ride was a terrific success once again!!! On Saturday, May 4, only 2 families, my family and another family were brave enough to tackle the cold and endure a long train ride to the quiet, but not so sleepy town of Van Buren. The ride was pleasurable and exciting and the train conductor and staff were very informative and hospitable as they talked about the history of the surrounding area as we rode through the countryside.

      There were a total of 6 people with the YDHAT group including my son Leron (4) and I and 4 people from the other family in which my niece Hateya (8) was part of that group. She was accompanied by her grandmother Cris, brother Katavian (4) and her friend Savannah, from her school. 
Leron & Katavian

Savannah & Hateya are all smiles

The youth were given donations of beaded necklaces and Glow Light sticks from YDHAT volunteers, from which they made bracelets, necklaces or they used it as a wand. Also, they were giving a Bulb Light Toy that when pushed, it would light up and spin in the Dark. As we drove through the tunnel, the YDHAT Group was easy to find as they glowed and spun their lights throughout the tunnel. However, the conductor cautioned us for a moment of “darkness” for he wanted the members of our train to experience the ‘pitch black scenery’. After everyone experienced the “Darkness” moment for a few seconds, the lights resumed and the train was aglow once again. 
Saturday Group Pic May 4, 2013

       The walk through Van Buren was nice, although a little chilly. The group ate lunch together at a diner and later we went to another shop for ice cream. There was a delay in our departure from Van Buren, therefore we continued to “Shop Hop” from store to store. Finally, our train arrived and we departed back to Springdale. We arrived by 6pm in Springdale and my son and I went home to prepare for another ride the next day on Sunday.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

The Dutasaca Family-Leo, Michelle and Leo Jr.
     On Sunday, the weather was a little bit warmer than on Saturday.  For this trip, the YDHAT group had 5 families for a total of 16 people including my son & I and my 2 younger brothers Kelvin and Kenny (Daniel).  Once again donations of Metallic Beads Necklaces, Glow Lights & Bulb Lights were given to the 5 children in the group, including my son Leron who assisted me in passing the items to the other children. Some Bulb Lights had characters such as Spiderman (Leron), Purple Bulb Light (Leo, 4) Incredible Hulk (Leo’s friend Creden-4), Cinderella (Kylee-2) and SpongeBob (Jadyn-9).
Jadyn and her Grandma enjoying the ride

Jadyn and her mom are all smiles.

     Although it was a short trip to Winslow, the children had fun with their Lights as we went through the Tunnel.  After the tunnel experience, and as we were headed back to Springdale, the children managed to bunch up together in their “Kid Area” to play and mingle with each other. When there’s a kid, there’s a way for fun!!

The Kilsch Family-Paul, Kendree and Kylee
Kids discussing their next adventure.
     The YDHAT train ride was a great experience and a wonderful way for parents to bring their kids together and mingle with other kids who are like them. Some parents were able to mingle a little bit but not much due to the seating arrangements on the train. But, once we got off, pictures were taken and small exchanges were made.  
Little Creden with mom Jamie

Oh, I think I see something!!

Kid Area Hangout

Sunday, May 5, 2013 Train Ride

Thanks everyone for the fun!  Thanks to the volunteers who helped to contribute money for the Lights, toys, and candy! Thanks to the Arkansas Missouri Railroad for sponsoring us for the train rides for the YDHAT group this year. 

Well, what’s next for YDHAT??? How about we get ready for some exciting Summer Baseball!!! YDHAT is coordinating with NWA Naturals Baseball Management Team to provide some tickets for the game in June or July or maybe both. More details to come later.