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Monday, January 16, 2012

Tyler's Journey of Hope

I met Tyler Swob last year when I traveled to Costa Rica with Discovering Deaf Worlds. I am so proud to share with you Tyler's upcoming advocacy effort with Push America. Tyler's video (ASL only) and story are shared with his permission. Please join me in supporting Tyler on his journey!

Did you know that there are over 54 million Americans living with a disability today? People with disabilities face many challenges everyday that you and I cannot imagine. But one of the most tragic barriers is a lack of understanding by our society. A simple message of empathy and acceptance is all it takes to break down this barrier, and I have committed myself to spreading this message this summer.

I will be raising awareness on behalf of people with disabilities by cycling from San Francisco to Washington, DC on the Journey of Hope from June 4 to August 13. Journey of Hope is hosted by Push America, the philanthropic arm of my fraternity, Pi Kappa Phi. We will also be reaching out to thousands of people with disabilities along the way, and striving to spread our message of acceptance and understanding to more than 40 million people! My expected goal is to raise $5,500 as a part of my team's goal of raising over $550,000. It is my hope that you will help me to make my journey possible by making a tax-deductible donation to Push America.

I am profoundly deaf and rely only on American Sign Language for communication. For this reason, I am in a unique position to support disabled Americans since I myself am considered "disabled." I can relate to Americans who have disabilities from my own experience as a deaf person. I want and can inspire them in a special way that no one else can. My goal is also to make a significant impact on how people view disabled people from my participation as a deaf person. Of the 54 million Americans with disability, 28 millions are deaf and I can be that voice for the 28 million deaf Americans. My experience as a deaf person fuels me with the passion to partake Journey of Hope.

What will make my participation even more unique is that two interpreting student volunteers will accompany me for the whole summer as my translation support - Noelle Corrado, a 3rd year interpreting student from Rochester Institute of Technology, and Emily Balzano, a 4th year American Sign Language student from University of Rochester. I am blessed to already have two interpreting volunteers who share my dreams for Journey of Hope. These interpreters will demonstrate the importance of providing interpretation support for the deaf like me.

I need financial support in order to embark on this journey of a lifetime. Your donation would mean so much to me in raising awareness for the disabled community. Please contact me at if you have any questions. Together we can make a difference!


"The only disability in life is a bad attitude."

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