equal opportunities and improved quality of life
Worldwide there are round 466 million people affected by hearing loss and among them 34 million children (Source: WHO, 2018). Round half of these cases could have been avoided by taking preventive measures.
One of the biggest challenges is that 80 percent of people with hearing loss live in low- to middle-income countries and often do not have any access to audiological or medical care. In low-income countries, for example, only one in 40 people with hearing loss wears a hearing aid. This has serious consequences: children with untreated hearing loss, particularly those living in these regions, have hardly any future prospects.
After all, children who cannot hear very well have difficulty learning to speak, which reduces their chances of receiving an education and developing at an appropriate rate for their age. Hearing aids as well as audiological and medical care would remedy this. However, access to these remains beyond the grasp of most families.
CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY – A SERIOUS CONCERN AT SONOVA
Sonova, the leading manufacturer of hearing solutions, founded the non-profit Hear the World Foundation against this background in 2006. The foundation advocates for equal opportunities and improved quality of life for people with hearing loss around the world. The foundation’s aim is to create a world in which each person has the chance of good hearing.
The vision of the Hear the World Foundation is a world in which:
- each person has the chance to experience good hearing,
- wearing a hearing aid is no longer a taboo,
- hearing is cherished and protected, and
- people with impaired hearing enjoy equal opportunities.
As leading hearing system manufacturer, Sonova sees its social responsibility as the provision of support to needy people with hearing loss and its involvement in prevention of hearing loss and provision of information. The Hear the World Foundation actively supports and promotes projects that provide help for people with hearing loss to enable them to enjoy a better quality of life.
The foundation also draws attention and raises awareness of the issue of hearing loss by carrying out studies and campaigns. Support is provided via financial resources, the provision of hearing systems or the deployment of one of the foundation’s own teams. Sonova bears all of the foundation’s administration costs to ensure that 100 percent of all donations go directly to the projects.