However, not everyone has the same access to technology and support. That is why this year’s Phonak Teen Advisor fundraiser will raise funds to help people who can’t afford hearing technology in Oaxaca, Mexico.
As a team, the US and Canadian teens will raise the money for the Hear The World Foundation from February 6 to March 15. They will be using their social media channels to spread awareness about the cause.
All proceeds will go to a non-profit organization in Oaxaca, Mexico called CORAL. CORAL carries out clinical and therapeutic treatment for people of all ages with hearing loss in the state of Oaxaca. Oaxaca is the third poorest state in the country. With 570 municipalities, Oaxaca has a high rate of people living with hearing loss. As there are many poor indigenous areas in the state with limited access to healthcare, most people cannot afford hearing technology.
“CORAL currently serves more than 3,000 people with hearing loss and their families annually,” the CORAL website states.
The CORAL team is specialized in audiology, social work, hearing and language therapy, psychology, pedagogy, Mexican Sign Language, social psychology, and administration.
Sonova audiology volunteers who have visited CORAL in the past, explain that the clinic is in need of new equipment to conduct hearing tests such as mobile tympanometry. The clinic is in need of equipment that is mobile and can travel to remote areas for hearing tests. The funds raised will provide audiological equipment and Phonak Roger devices for the organization.
High school junior, Natalie, is planning on spreading awareness about the fundraiser through her local newspaper and she hopes to get her school involved with the cause too.
“This fundraiser is important because I wouldn’t know where I would be without my hearing aids,” explains Natalie. “Everyone deserves the opportunity to be fitted with hearing aids, It helps us grow and reach our full potential.”
Maddy, a student in university, plans on hosting a bake sale at her university to fundraise for the Hear the World Foundation.
“I recognize how much support I had from when I was a kid, through technology and the environment and this has allowed me to overcome barriers in society thanks to the support I received,” says Maddy. “This fundraiser can give the kids an opportunity to have a similar playing field with everyone. Additionally, this will also allow me to become more involved with my community and to continue to bring awareness to hearing loss and how important certain support is. Although hearing aids may not always be a solution, in some situations it will still make a difference for those that need them, alongside support. A hearing aid alone will not be enough, the support that the financial aid is going towards will make a difference to help give everyone an opportunity.”