Since 2006, the Hear the World Foundation is committed to improving the quality of life and promoting equal opportunities for people with hearing loss globally. The Foundation has a special focus on projects that support children in reaching their development milestones and realizing their full potential in life regardless of their hearing loss. To date, the Hear the World Foundation has been involved in over 80 projects in 39 countries and has given thousands of people with hearing loss the chance of a better life.

THE FOUNDATION SUPPORTS HEARING HEALTHCARE SERVICES WITH A SPECIAL FOCUS ON:



Providing audiological care for children in low-income countries is a focal area of the Hear the World Foundation’s activities.

Children with undiagnosed hearing loss have very limited future prospects. This is because children who cannot hear very well have difficulty learning to speak, which restricts their chances of receiving an education and developing at an appropriate rate for their age. To improve the situation for children with hearing loss we use the following approaches:
 

  • Projects designed to increase newborn hearing screenings and deploy teams of experts
  • Professional training for local staff and provision of adequate tools to ensure adequate diagnosis
  • Providing support for projects that supply children with continuous care and additional speech therapy


By supporting self-help groups for parents, the Hear the World Foundation makes an important contribution, thus ensuring that affected parents receive specific help and assistance.

In the case of projects in third-world countries, it is also essential to provide parents with basic information about hearing loss. The foundation supports projects that run various programs to help parents:
 

  • Guides, newsletters and brochures
  • Workshops, conferences and special consultation sessions for parents
  • Opportunities to share experiences with other parents of children with hearing loss


The Hear the World Foundation globally promotes awareness for the topics of hearing and hearing loss and thus actively contributes toward the prevention of hearing loss.

The risks vary greatly between countries with high income levels and those with lower incomes, and the foundation’s projects are therefore equally wide-ranging. In high-income countries, noise is the primary cause of hearing loss and cases of this are rising rapidly. In countries with low incomes, however, childhood diseases, chronic otitis media or incorrect dosages of medication are the main factors behind the development of hearing impairments. Two completely different challenges which require specifically tailored approaches when it comes to finding solutions:
 

  • Campaigns for schoolchildren in high-income countries with the aim of raising awareness of the risks posed by listening to music at loud volumes (e.g. on MP3 players or at concerts)
  • Measures for improving the medical situation in low-income countries by training medical staff, conducting public awareness-raising campaigns and deploying teams of physicians



The Hear the World Foundation supports projects that enable continuous audiological training for professionals on site.

Medical aid and audiological care cannot be provided on a long-term basis if the local population is reliant on foreign specialists. The only way to build up a stable network so that knowledge can be passed on and put into practice is to train local audiologists. The foundation supports projects in the following areas:
 

  • Training local audiologists
  • Providing further training for clinic staff and teachers
  • Providing support for research projects and awarding grants
The main focus during the selection and implementation of projects is always on sustainability. For that reason, the Hear the World Foundation primarily supports those projects whose long-term positive effect can be assured as much as possible. This means that once hearing aids or cochlear implants have been provided, the recipients continue to be regularly treated by experts. As the required know-how is often absent in developing countries, the Hear the World Foundation organises corresponding training sessions. Particularly in the case of children with hearing loss, accompanying measures, such as speech therapies, are often required as well. The constant supply of batteries or need for replacement parts, such as cables, in the case of cochlear implant recipients, also needs to be ensured. Thanks to our partner, VARTA Microbatteries, we are always able to supply the recipients of hearing aid donations with batteries at no charge. For cochlear implant donation requests, evidence of a plan to cover replacement parts will need to be provided prior to a cochlear implant system donation being awarded. 

An application for funding can be submitted to the Hear the World Foundation for those projects within the scope of the Foundation’s purpose.