Farmington Valley Jewish Congregation (FVJC)-Emek Shalom, an intergenerational community of more than 250 families in Simsbury, CT, has installed audio over Wi-Fi assistive listening system Listen EVERYWHERE from Listen Technologies in its temple.
Members of the FVJC regularly gather at the temple for worship services, Jewish learning, social events, and social action initiatives. Recently, the community expanded the audio settings for the sanctuary with a four-port audio output card. The expansion provided an output for an assistive listening system to help those with hearing loss and others in the FVJC community participate more fully in services and gatherings.
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Advocating for Assistive Listening Technology
Mark Orenstein, the temple’s IT volunteer, had been involved in audio system upgrades at the Simsbury Library and the Eno Memorial Hall auditorium. The town had installed Listen EVERYWHERE servers for audio over Wi-Fi assistive listening in those facilities and Orenstein was familiar with the system’s performance. As a hearing aid user, Orenstein is an assistive listening technology advocate. He knows the difference assistive listening systems can make for people with hearing loss.
FVJC installed a Listen EVERYWHERE transmitter in its sanctuary so congregants can use their smartphones as assistive listening receivers. They download the free Listen EVERYWHERE app, access the FVJC Wi-Fi network, stream live or recorded sanctuary audio to their smartphones, and listen to clear sound with headphones or earbuds. Congregants with Bluetooth-enabled hearing aids or cochlear implants can access the audio directly from their smartphones.
Benefits of Listen EVERYWHERE
“The new Listen EVERYWHERE assistive listening system was easy to install and has helped many FVJC members fully experience worship services and feel more included in their community,” said Orenstein. “We love the solution and continue to promote its use to ensure everyone knows they can access the audio and feel included and welcome in the FVJC worship services.”
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The system also benefits people without hearing aids, as all congregants can download the app and access audio as needed. They do not need to borrow or return devices, although dedicated Listen EVERYWHERE Wi-Fi receivers are available for venues to purchase for users who do not have or prefer not to use a personal smartphone.
“Farmington Valley Jewish Congregation-Emek Shalom is deeply committed to inclusion and creating a community where all are actively engaged and inspired,” said Sam Nord, vice president of global sales at Listen Technologies. “Listen Technologies is proud to play a role in fostering connection within the community by making it easy for everyone to hear clearly and communicate in the sanctuary.”