February 19, 2014 at 6:00 AM
SUMMIT, NJ - Pat Dobbs, professional life coach, will lead a free workshop on communication skills for those with hearing loss and their communication partners March 1 at The Unitarian Church.
The workshop, held from 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., will teach how people with hearing loss can communicate their needs and advocate for themselves. People with normal hearing will receive tips on how to recognize people with hearing loss, and learn how best to communicate with them.
Dobbs, a Madison resident, knows firsthand about the problem, since she began losing her hearing in her 20's. "At 25, I got my first hearing aids," she says. "My hearing continued to decline, and by my late 50s, hearing conversations was a challenge." In 2010, she got a cochlear implant, a surgically implanted electronic device that provides a sense of sound to a person with hearing loss and today is "able to hear in the average range."
Dobbs has now expanded her 30-year life-coaching practice to include empowerment coaching for the hard of hearing. She also provides sensitivity training for corporations, corporate staff and customers, and has developed a Hearing Loss Revolution program with nine principles as the basis of her work. She is a trustee of the New Jersey Hearing Loss Association of America, and is president and founder of the Morris County chapter.