What does the Ascent Program do?
The Ascent Program offers an opportunity for families of young deaf, hard of hearing, and deafblind (DHHDBDB) children to connect with DHHDBDB adults. This is especially meaningful as most infants and toddlers who are DHHDBDB are the only DHHDBDB person in the family. The Ascent Program gives families an opportunity to interact with DHHDBDB adults. The goal of this program is for DHHDBDB adults to share their positive perspectives as well as their lived experiences of being deaf and hard of hearing. These experiences might include, but are not limited to:
- Experiences growing up as a DHHDBDB person
- Educational experiences
- Work/Career experiences
- Experiences communicating with others
- Perspectives on advocacy
- Support and guidance accessing resources
- Development of a healthy DHHDBDB identity
Why is the Ascent Program important?
Connecting with a DHHDB adult can support family members as they look to their child’s future and imagine possibilities. Parents and caregivers often have questions that can be best answered by DHHDB adults who have lived with the experience of being deaf or hard of hearing. While some parents may naturally focus on what is “missing” or what their child is unable to do, due to the impact of being deaf and hard of hearing, DHHDB adults can offer a positive perspective and optimism, as they build relationships with families. DHHDB adults can provide support to parents and caregivers as they bond with their DHHDB child.
The DHHDB adults in the Ascent Program are knowledgeable about the continuum of communication and language opportunities that DHHDB children are able to access and utilize. They receive training and education on current trends and best practices in the field so that they may appropriately respond to any family questions and/or concerns, provide support, and create learning opportunities. While DHHDB adults may be asked to discuss their own communication and language experiences, a value held by the Ascent Program is to respect the choices and decisions made by each family. The role of the deaf or hard of hearing adult is to provide information and support tailored to each family’s needs.
What are the Ascent Program values?
- Access: Families can obtain the information they want and learn from a DHHDB adult’s experiences. Parents can obtain resources, connections in their community, and information about language and communication.
- Community: Families can develop a sense of fellowship with a DHHDB adult with common interests.
- Empowerment: DHHDB adults can support families as they become more confident in the decisions they make.
- Inclusivity & Diversity: The program is fully inclusive of all families and DHHDB adults participating in the program. Each family’s uniqueness is celebrated.
- Informed Decision-Making: Families obtain the information, resources, and experiences they need to make decisions that are best for their family and their child who is deaf or hard of hearing.
- Relationships: DHHDB adults and family members develop a sense of connecting, belonging, and learning from each other as family members navigate their journey.
Who is eligible for the Ascent Program?
- Families of DHHDB children; and
- Children birth to 36 months of age; and
- Families who live in the state of Colorado
Who are the adults who work with the Ascent Program?
- Diverse group of individuals;
- Who enjoy working with children and families;
- That live in various geographic regions throughout the state;
- Who honor family values & family decision-making; and
- Are willing to collaborate with a variety of people from diverse backgrounds
What are the criteria for working with the Ascent Program?
Click on this link: In-Depth Criteria
How do I apply, as a DHHDB adult, to work with the program?
Text Only: 720-317-0031
How do I sign up to receive a visit from a DHHDB adult?
Text Only: 720-317-0031