What does the Covid-19 Pandemic mean to Harmonize for Speech? This is not an easy question to answer and of course we do not know the answer. A few of the trustees in looking at the financial figures for March and April 2020 compared to the same period in 2019 expected to see a drop in donations. The good news is that in fact they were up almost 50% this year. This is very encouraging.

Although we are confident that total donations in 2020 can at least meet or hopefully surpass those in 2019 there may well be some unique challenges this year. Historically most of the revenue to support H4S activities has come from Chapters and individual barbershoppers. In addition to these sources we implemented a new fundraising effort by participating in the Toronto Challenge in 2018 and in 2019 it raised $5135.00 for Harmonize For Speech.

Many programs that are supported by H4S use group therapy which of course may not be possible at this time. Service providers are working to provide virtual solutions to replace therapy groups, summer camps, etc. and may well experience new financial challenges in doing so. Many individuals who atre challenged to communicate may become frustrated more easily than those who can communicate their feelings. Some individuals with communicative dosorders therefore rely on physical contact and the closeness of friends, families, and caregivers for comfort. Now when it is needed most some of this support is not possible. Also, many post-secondary students who are studying to be qualified to work in the field of Communicative Disorders rely on H4S for support either directly or through their professional programs. Because finding jobs may be difficult this year, they may need that support more than ever.

The work of H4S is obviously as important as ever. For the reasons cited above H4S may need to rely on donations from individuals more than ever in 2020. Therefore we encourage everyone who usually supports H4S through their chapter or the many events we may miss this year, to donate directly on this website. Also, please consider Legacy Giving or Giving in Memory.

Please remember “We Sing That They Shall Speak” even though we cannot sing together at this time.

Jim Finlay, Member of the H4S Board of Trustees