Despite living just three miles down the road from Ohio Valley Voices, Molly Bradfish-Pinson never knew what OVV was or how important they would become to her family. “I thought it was a church!” she jokes.
This changed when Molly’s twin sons, SJ and Quinn, were born prematurely at twenty-nine weeks old. After spending their first few months in the hospital with health complications, the boys were able to go home. Another complication soon became apparent: SJ had hearing loss.
“After many appointments, SJ was diagnosed with bilateral hearing loss,” Molly explains. “We were devastated by this news and started gathering information to determine how we could help him.”
Through an intervention tool provided by the State of Ohio called “Help Me Grow,” Molly and her family discovered Ohio Valley Voices. The moment they set foot on campus they knew it was the right place for SJ.
“It was warm and welcoming, and all of the children were smiling and happy,” she recalls. “At first glance it looked like any other school. Kids were walking down the halls laughing, talking, and having fun.”
Molly was particularly impressed with the program’s extensive range of services that were geared toward fostering a child’s ability to speak. This gave Molly a sense of hope for her son’s future.
“Executive Director, Maria Sentelik took us on a tour and discussed all of the resources specifically designed to help children who are hearing impaired thrive,” she says. “I was so excited to find a place dedicated to maximizing learning in an environment where children could build friendships, grow, and fit in.”
But OVV offered more than just educational resources—it offered a sense of community.
“While it was nice to find a place for SJ, it was especially wonderful to find a community for the whole family,” Molly says. “Not only did the kids build relationships but all the parents became friends as well.”
SJ attended Ohio Valley Voices from ages three to six before mainstreaming into Loveland School District. “OVV was life-changing for SJ,” Molly reflects. “He left OVV confident and able to communicate like any other child.”
Since SJ’s graduation, Molly has continued to support Ohio Valley Voices by volunteering for the Annual Gala and donating through her company’s matching gift program. She believes it is a one-of-a-kind organization and eagerly shares her family’s story with everyone she meets. She encourages others to do the same, so that parents in need will know OVV isn’t just a church by the side of the road.
“OVV is a special place but there are still so many people who don’t know about it—spread the word!”