Fulfilling their promise to bring Hearing, Healing and Hope to the people of Afghanistan, Mr. Ehsanollah Bayat, Co-Chairman of The Bayat Foundation (www.bayatfoundation.org), Afghanistan’s leading Health and Social Development Organization, and Mr. William F. Austin, Founder of The Starkey Hearing Foundation (www.starkeyhearingfoundation.org), led a team of Audiologists, medical professionals and specially-trained volunteers on an intensive, week-long, August 27th-September 2nd mobile hearing care mission which restored the hearing of 1,544 Afghan children and adults living in Kabul, Herat and Balkh Provinces.
The Bayat/Starkey team launched their joint hearing care mission on August 27th in Herat Province, located in Western Afghanistan. Continuing from Herat, the Bayat/Starkey team established mobile hearing care centers and treated patients in Mazar-I-Sharif (August 28th) and Kabul City (August 29th-September 2nd).
In each location, the Bayat/Starkey hearing care team—supported by scores of volunteers from Afghan Wireless and The Bayat Foundation, utilized a meticulous intake process, which helped prepare each patient to receive the most appropriate and effective type of hearing care. The intake process included recording the name, residence and vital statistics of each patient, conducting a thorough examination of the ears and auditory system, and also, cleaning the ear and auditory system. After cleaning the ears and auditory system, each patient was fitted with a set of ear molds—clear, wear-resistant plastic discs used to house the hearing aids that were provided without cost to each patient.
After completing intake, volunteers escorted each patient into the treatment area, where the Bayat/Starkey hearing care team, together with specially trained volunteers fit each patient with the hearing devices that empowered each patient—many for the first time in their lives—to use the precious, powerful gift of hearing, sound and their voices to connect with their families, their communities and the world.
Working relentlessly-often in twelve hour shifts in each location, the Bayat/Starkey hearing care team, together with volunteers in each location, provided the powerful, profound gift of hearing to 417 people in Herat, 478 people in Mazar-I-Sharif, and 649 people in Kabul City, for a total of 1,544 Afghans treated—and lives transformed.
“Our partnership with the Starkey Hearing Foundation—now in its second successful year—is a moving example of how The Bayat Foundation fulfills its mission to provide health and healing to the people of Afghanistan,” said Ehsanollah Bayat, Co-Founder of the Bayat Foundation. “My wife, Mrs. Fatema Bayat, Co-Chair of the Foundation, myself and our staff and volunteers, we all have dedicated ourselves to creating an Afghanistan that is rich with peace and opportunity for all our people. And we’re honored that a man like Bill Austin, a great and inspirational humanitarian, shares our vision,” Mr. Bayat said.
“Ehsanollah and Fatema Bayat, and the Bayat Foundation, are examples of what I call The Compound Effect—doing good today and then seeing how today—and years from now, we can create a better world,” said Bill Austin, Founder of The Starkey Hearing Foundation. “Life as we know it, is sharing—your thoughts, and ideas and feelings, dreams and hopes for the future—that’s life—and hearing is vital to that,” Mr. Austin said.