Job Description: Parent Guides A parent guide must be a parent or legal guardian of a child who is deaf, hard of hearing, deafblind, or deaf with additional disabilities who will undergo specialized training to provide support to families with children who are deaf or hard of hearing.
Specialized Knowledge and Skills:
A good parent guide will be able to distinguish between personal belief system and bias, and will never manipulate or skew information or input with a family.
Parent Guides must be able to describe options for families in an unbiased manner consistent with the philosophy and mission of Indiana Hands & Voices.
Parent Guides must be able to support families with diverse backgrounds regardless of the educational and/or communication option they select in a manner that is consistent with unconditional positive regard.
Parent Guides must have knowledge of local and regional resources.
Parent Guides must have an understanding of the unique needs of infants and youth who are deaf or hard of hearing.
Parent Guides must have an understanding of the Birth to 3/ First Steps, early childhood system and Part B/ Public Education system and be willing to work collaboratively with the IFSP and IEP team members.
Parent Guides will be able to demonstrate comfort in supporting parents through the emotions associated with learning of their child’s hearing condition.
Bilingual Parent Guides will posses a strong understanding of the unique challenges faced by families where English is not the primary language and will assist the family in learning through communication in their native language.
Parent Guides will be expected to have a basic knowledge of the above. The program will offer comprehensive initial and ongoing training to support the work and continued development of the knowledge and skills of the parent guides.
Parent Guides are expected to meet identified protocols in a timely way. If the designated timelines can not be met, Parent Guides are expected to contact the GBYS Program Coordinator and ask that the case be re-assigned.
Parent Guides will provide their own transportation and must be willing to travel to meet with families and to attend trainings. Mileage and other authorized expenses will be reimbursed.
Parent Guides will complete all necessary paperwork, including home visit logs and accurate documentation of their work.
Parent Guides will maintain regular contact with the GBYS Program Coordinator.
Parent Guides will have access to the internet and be willing to conduct business via email and internet technologies as necessary.
Parent Guides will attend a mandatory initial training and on-going required trainings.
Parent Guides will attend and assist with implementation of the annual EHDI Family Conference hosted by Indiana Hands & Voices.
Parent Guides will maintain standards of confidentiality as outlined in the GBYS program.
Parent Guides will be participants of and maintain good standing within the Indiana Hands & Voices Organization.
Parent Guides must be authorized to work within the United States.
Parent Guides will treat all families with kindness and respect regardless of race, religion, socioeconomic status, or life style choices even if they are inconsistent or in conflict with their own values.
Parent Guides will provide all options to families in an unbiased manner and support families no matter what options families chose for their children.
Parent Guides will be active within their communities and leaders throughout the state on committees, boards, etc… where parents as stakeholders are vital.
What is Guide By Your Side? Guide By Your Side™ is a program from Hands & Voicesthat provides emotional support, technical assistance, networking, and unbiased information from trained parent guides to other families and to the systems that serve them. At the foundation of Guide By Your Side™ is our Hands & Voices value of peer support and a parent driven agenda. There is a comfort level that happens very naturally between parents who can relate to the experience of raising a child who is deaf or hard of hearing. Facing the challenges of navigating an unfamiliar service system can be confusing to the families and the benefit of having someone who’s ‘been there and done that’ is inestimable. Parent Guides are specially trained parents of children with deafness or hearing loss who work as “Guides” directly with families who have just learned their child cannot hear and want the unique support that comes from someone else who has walked this path him/herself and can share fromdirect experience and wisdom.
Meet the Parent Guides GBYS Coordinator - Lisa Condes Outreach Coordinator/East Central Parent Guide - Mariana Barquet Parent Guide Central - Sandra Lerman Parent Guide Central/Spanish - Mariana Barquet Parent Guide Northwest - Jamie Donsbach Parent Guide Northeast - Erin Fallat Parent Guide Northeast - Jenny Scheiderer Parent Guide West - Joanna Sichts Parent Guide Southeast - Laura Ryan Parent Guide Statewide Unilateral - Stacy Allgeier
Hands & Voices Guide By Your Side™ of Indiana is supported by the Indiana Department of Health Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program. Guide By Your Side has an office at the Center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Education. There are many wonderful resources on the Hands & Voice website, click here to be connected http://www.handsandvoices.org/ Click here to be linked to testimonials about Guide By Your Side.