Get involved this May with these ideas!
Better Hearing and Speech Month (or BHSM) is an awareness initiative created by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA for short) that takes place each May. The campaign is an excellent reminder about the importance of communication and an opportunity to raise awareness about hearing and speech issues. Learn more about the history of BHSM here!
Here’s a list of fun ideas for Better Hearing and Speech Month to help you get involved this year:
- Make creative social media content
- Attend a local event
- Organize your own event or fundraiser
- Learn (or teach) some basic sign language
- Spread the word in your community
- Take time to listen
Learn about these six fun ideas for Better Hearing and Speech Month below.
Make creative social media content
ASHA’s website includes a collection of BHSM resources you can use on social media, including Instagram stories, Facebook cover photos, and even Zoom backgrounds. But if you’re a creative type, feel free to create original content to raise awareness too! You can make videos, share art, or write posts encouraging people to share their personal stories, experiences, and tips for communication with individuals who have hearing loss.
Attend a local event
Even if they’re not specifically labeled as events for Better Speech and Hearing Month, you may be able to find events related to local hearing health awareness. For instance, you can participate in a spring Walk4Hearing or look for health and wellness initiatives hosted by audiology clinics or hospitals in your area.
Organize your own event or fundraiser
If you’re a good event planner and have connections in your community, why not organize something for Better Hearing and Speech Month yourself? You could host a silent disco event where participants wear wireless headphones and dance to music no one else can hear. Or, reach out to local audiologists and hearing healthcare professionals to see if they’ll provide hearing screenings at a community event, health fair, or senior center. You could also host something like a bake sale or used book sale to raise funds for hearing health initiatives.
Learn (or teach) some basic sign language
There are a lot of compelling reasons why learning basic ASL is a great idea for everyone! It’s good for your brain, and can help you be a more inclusive communicator at work and in your community. If you already know ASL, teach some basic words and phrases to your friends and family in honor of BHSM.
Spread the word in your community
Using a mix of ASHA’s materials and your own talents, you can help start a local awareness campaign using posters, flyers, social media graphics, BHSM merch, and other resources to spread the word about Better Hearing and Speech Month. Collaborate with local businesses, schools, and community organizations to display these materials for the month of May to raise awareness about the importance of speech and hearing health.
Take time to listen
At their core, speech and hearing are about human connection. Especially for those who don’t live with hearing loss themselves, it’s important to listen and engage with the people in your life who do. If you have hearing loss or have a friend or family member who’s open about theirs, invite them to grab lunch or go for a walk with you. Talk about your communication styles and share how you can make one another feel heard. More generally, you can also use Better Hearing & Speech Month as an opportunity to practice active listening and really hear what your friends and family have to say.
These fun ideas for Better Hearing and Speech Month are a great way to kick off some healthier hearing habits and get involved in the community. One more great way to honor the meaning of this month is to make sure you’re taking steps to care for your own hearing health. Schedule a hearing test and encourage the people in your life to do the same. Here are several places to get a hearing test, plus what to expect at one!