American Rescue Plan Grant ($1 Million) through the Connecticut Office of Aging & Disability Services
Purpose: To improve communication accessibility among Connecticut’s deaf, hard of hearing and DeafBlind communities.
The American School for the Deaf received a $1 million grant in American Rescue Plan Act funding through the CT Office of Aging & Disability Services to identify gaps in communication accessibility for Connecticut’s deaf, hard of hearing and DeafBlind communities and develop solutions. ASD engaged in a multi-faceted data campaign to gain firsthand knowledge about the challenges experienced by those with hearing loss throughout our State. An independent needs assessment report was developed by Innivee Strategies, and several areas of focus were identified:
- Marketing and Public Relations Campaign to raise awareness about communication accessibility challenges across the State.
- Professional Development training for medical professionals, healthcare staff and educators on how best to communicate with and provide care for patients with hearing loss.
- Medical Interpreting Pilot Program to provide off-hours medical interpreting for patients requiring American Sign Language interpreting during medical emergencies and unplanned hospital visits.
- Medical Interpreting Training Program to increase the number of qualified medical interpreters in Connecticut.
- Clear Mask starter-kits to Connecticut hospitals, medical facilities and first responders to raise awareness about their availability and effectiveness.
- Literacy programs to encourage literacy and language development among ASD students.
- Summer Camperships (up to $1,000) to deaf, hard of hearing and DeafBlind students in Connecticut to attend any deaf camp in the United States.
- Deaf Community Advocacy materials and statewide trainings to educate Connecticut’s deaf, hard of hearing and DeafBlind communities about their rights and advocating for accommodations.
- Sustainability Planning to establish long-lasting plans to improve communication accessibility across Connecticut.