Supported Organization: Listen Foundation

What happens when a profoundly deaf child gets cochlear implants? Or the child with moderate to severe hearing loss who receives hearing aids?

In both cases, that child suddenly has access to sound, but their brain does not know how to process that sound.

The Listen Foundation is the only organization in Colorado solely dedicated to providing a specialized therapy method for teaching children with hearing loss to listen and talk. When a child learns to listen, they can learn by listening which allows them to attend their neighborhood school without the need for special services.

The Listen Foundation was started in 1969 by a group of parents, each of whom had a child that was deaf and had the benefit of this speech and hearing program under the direction of Doreen Pollack. Here, the children learned to listen and talk with the use of hearing aids and training to maximize their residual hearing so they could develop speech in a natural way….by listening. It was the mission of these parents that no child, with even the smallest amount of residual hearing, should have to spend their life in silence. To support this goal, the Listen Foundation provides financial assistance for families in need and no child has been refused therapy due to their family’s inability to pay. In March 2018, Doreen Pollack was inducted posthumously into the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame for this groundbreaking work.

The children who attend this program learn to listen, comprehend spoken language, to speak, and to read. This is not just a technique, but rather a way of life that is practiced every day.

The Listen Foundation also offers education programs for both parents and professionals so that everyone working with a child can effectively help that child become an auditory learner and ultimately to thrive in school and in life. In 2018 the Listen Foundation took over Cochlear Family Camp, a long- standing annual tradition for families nationwide to come together as one community to share their experiences and celebrate success.

Santa at the Listen Foundation

For the past couple of years one of the Board Members of the Soule Family Foundation has played Santa Clause for one of their Supported Organizations, the Listen Foundation. The Listen Foundation was founded in 1969 and was the first organization in the world to advocate Listening and Spoken Language therapy (LSL), and remains Colorado’s only parent centered, auditory-based communication approach for teaching children who are deaf and hard of hearing spoken language through listening.

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