Promoting Hearing Health in First Nations Communities
Introducing a Sound Sense Champion: Dr. Jane Lea!
“Several months ago, when we discovered an unusually high prevalence of noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) in Hartley Bay, we knew that something had to be done.
Having heard about the Sound Sense program, and its effectiveness in reducing the risk of NIHL, I reached out to The Hearing Foundation of Canada, volunteering to deliver the program to Hartley Bay and other Northern B.C. communities.”
“It is crucial that northern First Nations, Metis and Inuit (FNMI) communities have the opportunity to participate in initiatives like the Sound Sense program. I am hopeful that Sound Sense will help to provide the knowledge and resources necessary to reduce the risk of noise-induced hearing loss in these Northern communities.”
– Dr. Jane Lea, BSc MD FRCSC
Thanks to Dr. Lea, The TELUS Community Board of Northern B.C., and donors like you, we are now able to offer Sound Sense to those who need it most. Approximately ~30% of FNMI children currently experience some degree of hearing loss – that is nearly double the percentage of the general population.
Your support allows us to reduce the risk of noise-induced hearing loss for children in the First Nations communities of Bella Bella, Tofino, Kitkatla, and Hartley Bay, and we only hope to keep growing.
When asked during a Sound Sense presentation what sounds they most enjoy, children in every classroom across Canada always give one common answer – music! So several years ago, THFC partnered with the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony to deliver a musical version of Sound Sense. The results have been outstanding. Working with the symphony, we have been able to reach more children in the Kitchener Waterloo region than ever before.
Given the great success of our Kitchener Waterloo partnership, we set out to build upon this musical model and reach more children with our important hearing health message. Thanks to The Ottawa Community Foundation the University of Ottawa’s School of Music, and donors like you, THFC is now able to expand this musical delivery of Sound Sense to the Ottawa region.
“The Sound Sense program aligns with the University of Ottawa’s commitment to service, learning, civic responsibility, and dedication to bilingualism. This program provides an excellent opportunity for our students to share their knowledge with younger students and grow as community leaders.”
– Lori Burns, Director, School of Music, The University of Ottawa
For more information about the Sound Sense program your gifts made possible, please contact our Manager – Education and Government Relations, Mary Smirle, at email@example.com or 1-866-HEAR-YOU (432-7968)
You did it! You and about 11,699 other people
What an amazing month of May! In honour of Hearing and Speech Awareness Month, donors like you joined The Hearing Foundation of Canada (THFC) in advocating for infant hearing health. Thank you so much for coming together for Canadian babies.
Only five out of thirteen provinces have sufficient programs for newborn hearing screening and intervention. Access to screening and, if needed, early intervention programs is essential for babies to communicate with parents and for brain development in the very early months of their life.
THFC launched a petition calling on the Federal Government to make infant hearing health a priority. In early June the tinyEARS.ca petition, with your signature on it, was formally presented to the Canadian Government.
Thanks to you, Canada is one step closer to developing a national mandate for infant hearing health. This mandate will ensure that every baby across Canada has the opportunity to receive early diagnosis and treatment for hearing loss.
It is moments like this–Canadians coming together to take action–which proves our collective power to incite change. With every dollar you give, you are enabling us to help babies across Canada, and ensure that they have the resources necessary to thrive.
On behalf of parents, grandparents and siblings and the hearing health community, we simply cannot thank you enough. Thanks must also be given to the Newborn Infant Screening Task Force, the Canadian Academy of Audiologist and the Canadian Hearing and Auditory Research Translation Group (CHART). These groups were instrumental in making sure the campaign was successful.
We are stronger together.
Much work remains to be done. But with your continued support, we will continue working for lasting change for Canadians. Together we can ensure that every baby has the best possible start.
For more information, please visit www.tinyEARS.ca, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 1-866-HEAR-YOU (432-7968)
Jun 28, 2013
Three $20,000 grants to medical research projects
This past year, The Hearing Foundation of Canada (THFC) received a large number of hearing health medical research proposals from all over Canada. The Medical Research Review Committee, lead by Dr. Peter Alberti, thoroughly reviewed all projects and commented on the quality and depth of applications received.
THFC is pleased to announce that we will be funding three innovative hearing health medical research projects with grants of $20,000 each. The Foundation will continue to support The Inner Ear Restoration Project and the Sunnybrook Research Institute by funding Drs. Alain Dabdoub and Joanna Mulvaney and their project: “Hair Cell Regeneration – focusing on Atoh1”. THFC will also support Drs. Benoit Justras and Jean-Pierre Gagné at the University of Montreal and their project, “Auditory training in noise among adults with hearing problems”. In addition, THFC will support Drs. Liam Brunham, Colin Ross and Bruce Carleton at the University of British Columbia by funding their project, ““Pharmacogenomics of Cisplatin-Induced Hearing Loss in Adults”.
THFC would like to thank all of the talented Canadians, involved in hearing health research, who submitted proposals for funding. We wish you all the very best in your research endeavours and look forward to the advances that will take place in hearing health due to your research.
THFC welcomes new partnership
Green Shield Canada has generously donated $7,500 to help deliver Sound Sense, The Hearing Foundation of Canada’s (THFC) noise-induced hearing loss prevention education program, to children across Ontario.
President, Dino Sophocleous, commented:
“We are pleased to welcome Green Shield Canada as a partner in our efforts to save the hearing of children in Ontario. Thanks to Green Shield Canada, we will be able to reach more children with Sound Sense, our hearing health education and noise-induced hearing loss prevention program. Green Shield Canada’s support will help us teach children to practice safe listening and avoid unnecessary hearing loss by using hearing protection and reducing their exposure to loud noise.”
Practice Safe Listening Day 2013
Toronto, May 22, 2013 – On the morning of Wednesday, May 22, staff and volunteers of TELUS and The Hearing Foundation of Canada (THFC) handed out hundreds of earplugs to commuters and pedestrians at 25 York Street in Toronto in an effort to raise awareness about noise-induced hearing loss and to urge people to protect one of their most valuable resources – their sense of hearing!
As volunteers handed out earplugs, they encouraged people to “practice safe listening”. One in five teenagers now have some degree of hearing loss, which is attributable, in part, to noise damage. Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) is permanent damage caused by overexposure to loud sounds, and it generally builds up over time. By the time a person realizes that they have hearing loss, it’s too late. Once the damage has been done, it can’t be fixed. The good news is that NIHL can be prevented through simple shifts in listening behaviour such as wearing hearing protection, like earplugs, in noisy environments, turning down the volume, and limiting exposure to loud noise. The first step however, is to create awareness among the general population.
“We are grateful to TELUS, our national Sound Sense patron, for their belief and visionary support in the fight against preventative hearing loss,” said Dino Sophocleous, President of The Hearing Foundation of Canada. For more information on Sound Sense program or the other programs of the Hearing Foundation of Canada, please visit www.hearingfoundation.ca and www.soundsense.ca.