Starkey Hearing Foundation will conduct a service mission in New Orleans Saturday, Feb. 2, the day before the professional football championship game.
Starkey Hearing Foundation is dedicated to bringing understanding among individuals and communities by providing the gift of hearing. On this mission, the foundation will continue fulfilling its commitment to provide 100,000 hearing aids to people in need annually, and 1 million by 2020, as a member of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI).
The Foundation’s team of audiologists and staff will fit each of the more than 100 pre-selected recipients—including 12 local musicians—with their own customized, digital hearing device. Hearing is so important to the playing and enjoyment of music, and music is the pulse that drives New Orleans culture, which is why this mission will take place at the Ellis Marsalis Center for Music in the Musician’s Village.
Musicians’ Village is one of the most recognized post-Katrina rebuilding efforts of the New Orleans Area Habitat For Humanity (NOAHH). This project, spearheaded by New Orleans natives Harry Connick Jr. and Branford Marsalis, was created as a way to preserve the local music and culture.
Celebrity and professional athlete volunteers commonly assist at the Foundation’s missions where they witness the life-changing impact of this cause and support recipients as they are fitted with their new hearing aids. As part of the mission, recipients also receive audio testing, counseling and instruction on how to care for their new devices, all courtesy of Starkey Hearing Foundation.
“Music plays a significant role in New Orleans’ heritage and culture and I’m delighted to return to this area to give the gift of hearing once again,” said Bill Austin, founder of Starkey Hearing Foundation. “Watching somebody light up as they hear music clearly again is an incredible experience and sharing that moment is something you never forget.”
Starkey Hearing Foundation’s New Orleans Mission is one of dozens conducted each year by the Foundation, both domestically and internationally. Hearing missions are the primary way Starkey Hearing Foundation realizes its goal: So the World May Hear. As a CGI member, the Foundation has pledged to fit 1 million hearing aids to individuals in need by the end of this decade.
According to Starkey Hearing Foundation, hearing loss is pervasive, affecting 34 million Americans – or one in 10. Yet, with the help of a hearing device, hearing loss can often be corrected in a majority of cases, giving an individual the opportunity to better connect with their family, the community and the world around them.