our mission

The Hip Hop Heals Foundation was established in 2009 as a 501(c)3, non-profit, tax-exempt charitable organization. The mission of the Hip Hop Heals Foundation is to provide hip hop dance classes and workshops for Deaf and Hard of Hearing people, and also to provide the general public with more insight into Deaf culture.

about the foundation

The Hip Hop Heals Foundation was founded in 2009 by Lauren Collins, LMSW, to provide the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community with access to hip hop dance classes, workshops and hip hop culture in general. There are also other facets to the HHHF’s mission, and those are: (1) to break down the barriers that exist between the general public and the Deaf community; (2) to provide the mainstream community with education and insight into Deaf culture and especially American Sign Language; and, (3) to promote a better understanding of all the implications of Deafness when it comes to communication, cultural differences and daily functioning in one of the loudest cities in the world: NYC.

By exposing the general public to Deaf and Hard of Hearing dancers, the Hip Hop Heals Foundation hopes to foster an interest in learning ASL within the general public. The HHHF also aims to provide a better understanding of the implications of hearing loss in today’s world. Another purpose the HHHF strives to fulfill is to deconstruct false notions and concepts that many people unknowingly have about members of the Deaf community.

In order to further its mission, The Hip Hop Heals Foundation accepts tax-deductible contributions from corporations, individuals, patrons, supporters and advocates of the Deaf and Dance communities, and raises additional funds through direct solicitations, fundraisers and other events. HHF is a non-profit, tax-exempt 501(c)3 charitable organization. Federal Tax Identification Number: 26-4830366.

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"Hip Hop Heals Most DEAFinitely is an incredible opportunity for Deaf kids to dance and to enjoy music, and it's all thanks to the founder of the group, Lauren Collins. As the School Social Worker, Lauren has been a colleague of mine at the Lexington School for the Deaf for the past 4 years, and I've come to enjoy her as a friend and admire her as a co-worker. She brings passion, ambition and inspiration to the Hip Hop Heals Most DEAFinitely Dance Company, and nurtures their creativity through the movement in their dance. I can't wait to see them perform!""

— Dr. Chris Ita, School Psychologist, Lexington School for the Deaf