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The infamous "Black Friday" is upon us and the official Holiday Shopping Season has begun!  As you are bustling about pushing your way through the crowds and waiting in never ending lines, take the time to reflect on all that you have to be thankful for.  There are so many others out there that can not say the same.  It is easy to to pass by the bell ringers at every store front; keep your eyes down, pretend to be busy.  Afterall, you could not possible give to all of them.   But what can you give back?

At V.O.I.C.E. Inc, we try to give back when we can; our way of thanking the community that supports us and keeps us alive.  Coming up on Friday, December 14th we will be partnering with the ASL Club of Delta College to host our annual Deaf Children's Christmas party.  Admission for adults is only $2 and children get in free with the donation of 1 non-perishable food item.  We will be supplying a meal, games, stories and even a Signing Santa!  We invite you to join us, or even volunteer to help run the activities!  For more event details, visit our December Calendar of Events on our Events page.

If you are unable to help with our Christmas party, we also graciously accept donations.  As a non-profit organization, your monetary support is crutial!  By visiting our homepage and scrolling to the bottom you will see a link to "Support Voice Services."  Click on this link to offer your support.  As you know, we not only offer interpreting services, but also home staffing for individuals with disabilities and employment services to assist individuals looking for work.  Please consider supporting us as we support our community!

September 14th and 15th V.O.I.C.E. Inc sent staff interpreters Colleen and Karen to the Trix Bruce workshop in Livonia.  Sponsored by My Hands Your Heart interpreting agency, we girls learned some valuable lessons in classifiers and had a lot of fun.

Patricia Bruce, called Trix by the Deaf community, is a fabulously talented performer and interpreter educator.  She travels the country sharing her knowledge of classifiers and storytelling techniques through entertaining performances and interpreter workshops.  Trix actively involves her audiences by asking for topics to lead her impromptu ABC and Number stories as well as to join her on stage where hilarity undoubtedly ensues.

Saturday’s workshop analyzed the details of classifiers.  Trix reviewed classifier hand shapes and provided lists upon lists of what they might be used to represent.  She also provided video of native signers telling stories and examined the details of their production with the audience. Participants were asked on several occasions to practice a minute detail and perform it for the audience; for example the flaring nostrils on a bull preparing to charge, or the personification of a microwave popping popcorn.

Trix’s workshop challenged its participants to think on a much more visual level and to take the time to consider the details of a story.  She was well received by her audience of interpreters and the Deaf community alike. Obviously enthusiastic about ASL linguistics, Trix was an extremely knowledgeable workshop presenter and I cannot wait to see what she comes up with next!

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