My name is Sylvia Sumpter. I am a Captioning Agent for CaptionCall. I feel joy knowing I perform an invaluable service for individuals who have a hard time using the phone to chat with loved ones or conduct important business and life management calls.
I have friends, family and acquaintances whose lives have been enriched by CaptionCall. One such person is Leslie, a dear friend of mine. Leslie developed a hearing impairment as a result of an illness. Ten years ago, at age 36, she was diagnosed with Meniere’s disease, but got no relief from prescribed medication. Recently a neurologist gave her a different diagnosis; Migraines with Aura. Prescribed medications are now taking effect and she is seeing positive results. She states that her hearing was functioning at 100% clarity before she fell ill. Now it is functioning at approximately 35% clarity with some fluctuation.
She often asks others to repeat themselves and noticeably reads lips as she is able. It is necessary to speak loudly and clearly when engaging with her; otherwise she is unable to hear and understand what is being said.
She has taken time to learn American Sign Language to aid her communication skills, an endeavor that many hearing impaired individuals will not undertake in their adult years. This demonstrates an awareness of her disability and a desire to do and learn all she can to improve her quality of communication as well as her quality of life.
Leslie received a CaptionCall phone with no out-of-pocket expense on December 4, 2017. The captioning service is also free as a result of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). To participate in this no-cost program she had to obtain certification from her doctor (or hearing specialist) to show that she has hearing loss and needs captions to use the phone effectively. After sending the certification form to CaptionCall, she was contacted by the scheduling department at CaptionCall and an appointment was made to install the phone.
Now Leslie is able to understand what people are saying on the phone. She has a desire to once again pursue higher education and earn an American Sign Language associates degree with emphasis on instruction and training with service animals to serve the hearing impaired community. She possesses a great love of music, which is how I serendipitously met her at a Ginger & The Gents show (a local rock n roll band for which my husband plays bass). We became fast friends.
She is currently being considered and reviewed to receive hearing aids through The Starkey Foundation, a vital entity that aids the hearing impaired who are in need of additional monetary assistance to receive their hearing aid devices. This will give her increased clarity of hearing, not to mention the well-deserved gift of rockin’ out at concerts.
This is what Leslie told me regarding her CaptionCall phone: “I am absolutely loving it! I love that I can verify what is being said via the captions. Love, love, love the save call function, the ease, and the convenience of using the phone altogether. I am still playing with my phone, but I love it and I am very thankful to have it in my life. [So far I have had great service and love my captionists]”
It doesn’t get any better than that.
Written By Sylvia Sumpter, Captioning Agent