Speech

Good Morning!

Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to speak on behalf of my daughter Sierra, unfortunately, at this time she is extremely limited in her communication and this is one of the many challenges we are trying to help her overcome and why I am standing before you today. I am seeking assistance to provide my daughter with the best education and opportunity to succeed in life independently as any child deserves. Due to complications 26 weeks into my pregnancy my daughter was born prematurely on October 10, 2005 at 1 pound 5 ounces. After her birth she was rushed to the NICU where her life would hang in the balance for 3 1/2 months before finally being released. During these 3 months she had code blue, which is a hospital emergency term that refers to a child that has stopped breathing, and she was resuscitated 3 separate times and brought back to life. After her third code blue the doctors told us to make our peace and say goodbye to our precious daughter who we didn’t even get to know. Under these circumstances I became closer to God than I had ever known because of the constant prayers I sent on her behalf and on mine begging for more precious time. The following morning i realized my prayers must have been answered because my baby was still alive, hanging on. According to the doctors comments that morning, every medical textbook on the face of this earth says my daughter should not of been alive but I have always been told and believe that all you need is faith the size of a mustard seed. after child CPR classes and lessons on how to use her life sustaining devices, she was allowed to come home. Unfortunately her fight for a real survival was just beginning as we realized that the medications administered to help keep her alive had caused her to go deaf. however, Thanks to modern technology we were able to give her hearing back in the form of cochlear implants. Although this device allows her to hear noises, it takes hard work on her part and specialized educators, therapies,and audiologists to accomplish hearing and comprehension as we know it. Unfortunately, Virginia lacks the technology and resources to provide her these necessities so she can grow into the intelligent and independent person I know she can be. The best of these necessities however, have been offered to her at st. Joseph’s institute of the deaf in St. Louis Missouri. this is one of the best schools in the nation that is specifically designed for cochlear implanted children. it is here that Sierra will get the specialized education that will allow her to be caught up with her peers and learn to communicate in a manner that will afford her the opportunity to live a life free of being ridiculed, bullied, or taken advantage of. due to other misfortunes and poor timing in my life, I lack the resources myself to make a transition from the only home we know to get her to a place where she can grow to her full potential. We have been granted this opportunity that must be accepted within a narrow window of time that will close forever if we are unable to relocate and finance the tuition in a timely manner. With that said, I am asking for any assistance available that will help us accomplish these goals that will help provide her with the fulfilling life she greatly deserves. thank you for listening.

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