Hearing Our Way: Giving Kids with Hearing Loss a Kickstart

Less than a week into its exciting Kickstarter campaign, Hearing Our Way, the magazine for children and teens with hearing loss, has already achieved over 35% of its funding goal. The magazine, envisioned and established by Melanie Paticoff, participant of Millstone’s LENS program and Next Dor & YPD board member, provides social and emotional support to young people with hearing aids and cochlear implants. The campaign will raise money to send magazines free of charge to children around the world. Hearing Our Way launched the Kickstarter campaign with a fundraising event for friends and family last weekend at TechArtista, a co-working space in the Central West End. Now, Hearing Our Way is depending on support from the St. Louis Jewish community to reach its goal.

“Hearing Our Way provides an opportunity for children and teens to not only read about others like them,  but connect with those who are experiencing similar challenges with hearing loss,” said Paticoff.  “The magazine teaches kids and teens to celebrate their differences and provides vital social and emotional support to young people during their formative years.”

Kickstarter is an increasingly-popular crowd-funding platform that is changing the way millions of people connect with entrepreneurs and fund creative projects. Hearing Our Way backers have the opportunity to sponsor free subscriptions for families, teachers, schools, and offices and earn rewards including Sophie’s Tales children’s books about hearing loss. Paticoff hopes the open-captioned Kickstarter video will raise awareness about hearing loss and cochlear implants and jump start buzz around this exciting new publication.

The magazine is produced by Sophie’s Tales LLC, an educational publishing company started by Paticoff that specializes in products for children with hearing loss. Paticoff’s mission to raise awareness about this cause is driven by passion and a personal connection to deaf education. Her cousin Julie is profoundly deaf and hears with bilateral cochlear implants. After recognizing a lack of products designed to support children like Julie, Paticoff designed Hearing Our Way to connect young people with hearing loss and provide them with role models, advice, and content designed specifically for them. Following a successful ‘prototype’ first issue that launched in April, distribution has reached more than 5,000 people worldwide, encompassing 49 states and 27 countries.

The Kickstarter campaign offers a unique opportunity for individuals to be a part of this start-up and help build a future for this important resource. Only a short time remains to support this exciting social venture. To learn more, discover reward levels, and share the video, connect with Hearing Our Way’s page on Kickstarter.

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