The Global Foundation For Children With Hearing Loss wrapped up a wonderful week in Vietnam visiting the four early intervention centers and hospitals involved with our Vietnam CI Donation program in collaboration with Hear the World Foundation. The program is providing cochlear implants, surgical, audiology, and auditory-verbal therapy support to 10 children in need. The families also receive 15 years of complementary processor upgrades and technical support. This is a package of services and support that helps to ensure the children have all the tools they need to benefit fully from the cochlear implant to learn to listen and speak.
We met the families of the children implanted last January as well as those who are scheduled to undergo surgery next month. Vietnamese audiology and therapy professionals at the four locations have been involved with the Global Foundation training programs for years.
The children who were implanted in January had their cochlear implants turned on in February. Their therapists filed reports indicating progress made by all the children in the first three months. Each of these children have exceptionally committed parents who work with them which is a big reason for the strides the children have made towards strong listening and spoken language sills. It was fun to see the kids doing so well and experience the happiness of the parents.
The next round of surgeries will take place at the end of July in Vietnam. One of the children will celebrate his second birthday the day after he has surgery. What a great birthday present! All the children currently wear hearing aids and are enrolled in auditory-verbal therapy with professionals trained by the Global Foundation. The cochlear implants will help these children have better access to sound and make it easier for them to continue to develop listening and spoken language skills.
It was great to meet the families getting the donation in July and talk about what to expect on surgery day and afterwards and to review the elements of the donation with them. We also continue to be inspired by the amazing Vietnamese professionals that we have been fortunate to work with over the years.
It is truly wonderful to consider all the people associated with the Global Foundation professional team who were willing to help Vietnam establish the locally-based expertise necessary to make this project possible.