Voice & Vision Blog


We live in a very noisy world. The noises we encounter every day are not just annoying, they also have the potential to permanently damage our hearing. When we are assaulted by loud sounds, tiny hair cells deep inside our ears can be harmed. These cells cannot be repaired or replaced, so once they’ve been damaged, our ability to hear is forever diminished. While there are other causes for hearing loss, noise is the most common cause for hearing loss in the United States. It is estimated...

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Silver Linings

A while back I began noticing an epidemic of bad posture—otherwise healthy people of all ages, their shoulders slumped forward, necks craned out in front, heads arriving everywhere a second ahead of the rest of their bodies. (Presumably a side effect of long hours spent hunched over computers and cell phones.) I found myself feeling sorry for these people and wondering if they knew what was happening to them. While shopping one day, I tried on an outfit in a dressing room that had large mirrors...

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College Plus: College, Mentoring, Success! Grant Received

For our fourth year in a row, College Plus received a grant from the Joseph Jocelino Gaskill Education Fund through The Philadelphia Foundation. The amount we received this year was $3,332.70. The fund was established in 2010 by Joseph and Almerinda Gaskill in honor of their late son who died prematurely as a result of an undiagnosed mental illness. This grant helps Voice and Vision’s College Plus Program to fund and support people who have mental illness and/or co-occurring disorders to...

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When is a Vitamin Not a Vitamin?

When is a vitamin not a vitamin? When it’s actually a hormone. “Vitamin” D is a hormone our bodies produce in response to sunlight, and it is profoundly important for good health. Like all hormones, vitamin D is essentially a messenger chemical that sends information from one body part to another in order to regulate body processes. If the body’s vitamin D levels are insufficient to send these messages properly, illness is inevitable. Scientists have long known that vitamin D is essential to the...

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The Road Trip

The autumn when my daughter Alison was 19, she and one of her best friends decided to drive from our home in Anchorage, Alaska to visit friends and relatives in Seattle, Washington and Portland, Oregon. Since she was no longer a minor, Alison didn’t have to get our permission to go; but out of respect, she asked for our blessing. No small undertaking, the mileage for this trip would be somewhere in the neighborhood of 2500 miles, many of those on the infamous ALCAN (Alaska-Canada) Highway—notorious...

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