We’re on our way to Vietnam for the Global Foundation’s second Mobile Mission. Thanks for checking in. We hope that you’ll ride along with us over the next several weeks as we travel from Saigon to Lai Thieu to Nha Trang on this latest adventure.

For a bit of history on our Mobile Mission series…..the participants in our Vietnam Deaf Education Program asked us last year if we could supplement our annual summer workshops at Thuan An Center with visits to their home communities during the year to further their professional development. So, we designed this Mobile Mission series which features in-classroom mentorship and audiology training on location at some of the 38 schools and centers in our program.

Last January’s Mobile Mission team traveled to Dalat, Danang, and Saigon. Each location we visited had their own unique strengths and opportunities in their efforts to serve children with hearing loss. Our seasoned professionals did a wonderful job adjusting on the fly to provide classroom coaching to teachers and audiology training to school staff and local hearing aid dispensers. We fit hearing aids on children who needed them. Families came in droves in the evenings to hear our professionals lecture about the role they could play in supporting their children’s auditory and language development.

For us at the Global Foundation, the Mobile Missions provide invaluable opportunity to see first-hand our training participants at work in their home environments. We adjust and make enhancements to our summer program based on these experiences. For instance, in January, we recognized a need for more pediatric audiology expertise. So, we added an in-depth audiology track to our 2011 summer program to provide extra training for educational staff so they can better support the audiological needs of the children in their schools.

Our summer program and Mobile Mission series are integrated learning experiences for the participants whom we are working with in this multi-year initiative…lessons learned during the summer at Thuan An Center are reinforced during the Mobile Missions in home classrooms and therapy centers. And by fitting hearing aids on the children attending the schools in our program, we can provide training throughout the year to ensure these children have every opportunity for success.

This February 2012 Mobile Mission team comprises of Judy Simser, Jim Watson, and Lea Watson as our auditory-verbal professionals and Lauri Nelson, Jacque Patton, and Zofia Wald-Mroz as our audiologists. It is a terrific group who bring great teamwork and sense of humor to go along with their years of experience.

We’ll be starting at the Children’s Hospital in Saigon, training doctors, therapists, and technicians. Then we head out to the countryside of Lai Thieu and the beaches of Nha Trang to work with a group of school programs. In addition to the auditory-verbal and pediatric audiology training, we’ll be working alongside the Vietnamese participants to test hearing and fit hearing aids as necessary on over 100 young children. We are in for a very fun, rewarding time for sure.

We’re heading out to the airport. Please bear with us as we make our way across this big planet. I will kick things off in the coming days with stories from Hanoi, Nha Trang, and Saigon as I work with our partners there to put the final pieces in place in advance of our Mobile Mission and continue to explore expansion and business development opportunities for the Global Foundation. The rest of the team arrives later in February and we’ll get this show started.

I invite you to take a look at our blog posts from the past few years relegating the journey we’ve taken from 2009 to get to this point. For a summary of our efforts in Vietnam, check out Invent for Humanity’s coverage of our work.

Thank you again for your support. There is much, much more to come. We look forward to sharing it all with you!