In response to the devastation from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, Phonak is intensifying its relief efforts that began in late August by teaming up with several charitable organizations, the global hearing solutions provider announced.
- Phonak is continuing to work with its longtime partner Songs for Sound to help identify groups and organizations to assist those in the affected areas.
- Phonak and Songs for Sound—a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for individuals with hearing loss—have partnered with the Dallas Hearing Foundation—a nonprofit that donates hearing aids, auditory therapy, educational support, and more to individuals in financial need—to distribute various supplies, including replacement hearing aids, batteries, hand sanitizers, cleaning and drying kits, and more.
- Phonak is continuing to work with Songs for Sound partners to help distribute necessary supplies to local shelters in both the Houston and South Florida area.
- Phonak has also partnered with Team Rubicon—an organization that provides disaster relief—to collect charitable donations, and will continue to match all donations dollar-for-dollar until September 20.
“Phonak employees, along with our good friends at Songs for Sound, the Dallas Hearing Foundation, and Team Rubicon have literally been working together non-stop over the past few weeks to assist those affected by these disasters,” said Jan Metzdorff, president, Phonak US. “To date, we’ve responded to nearly 50 requests for help and are on-track to provide more than 100 replacement hearing aids at no cost in both the Houston and the South Florida areas. We’ve also raised thousands of dollars that we’ll be matching to go straight to people in need.”
Coordinated relief efforts require careful planning. On August 30, Phonak and Songs for Sound acted quickly to assist people in local shelters by teaming up with the Dallas Hearing Foundation, according to the Phonak announcement.
“Songs for Sound’s mission is to help the deaf and hard-of-hearing community live a mainstream life, so this is exactly where we needed to be,” said Jaime Vernon, executive director and founder, Songs for Sound, Inc. “My great partner, Jennifer Clark at The Dallas Hearing Foundation, and me assembled a dream team of local Texas women to triage as many requests to Phonak as possible.”
Vernon and Clark then worked hand-in-hand with members of Phonak customer care, product management, and the Sonova distribution center in Aurora, Ill, to expedite the shipping of products and accessories. Clark recounted the following story:
“When I first arrived in Houston, I went to the Lakewood Church. There was a gentleman there that had lost his hearing aids and his glasses in the flood and was having trouble communicating. He gave me the name of his audiology clinic and I told him I would be back with hearing aids for him. I reached out to Jaime and she jumped into action and overnighted hearing aids to me. I came back to Houston with his aids and as soon as he saw me, he jumped up and gave me a great big hug. One of the other volunteers took him to the audiologist the next day for programming.”
“If it weren’t for Phonak, many would be void of sound to this day,” said Vernon. “Phonak sent boxes and boxes of supplies including dry-store kits, care kits, hearing aids, and more. It was remarkable how Phonak stepped up for the deaf/HOH communities in Houston. There was never any question or care…they continually responded with ‘Yes, we got it. It’s being shipped,’” she said.
“Every day when I pulled up to my house, my porch was covered with boxes of batteries, Dry and Stores, hearing aids, pediatric care kits,” added Clark. “It was incredible to see everyone come together for a group of people that might have otherwise slipped through the cracks.”
According to Metzdorff, in addition to helping patients, Phonak is also assisting hearing care professionals in affected areas by providing free replacement supplies, products, and equipment as well as supporting the rebuilding of offices that were severely damaged or destroyed.
Phonak is continuing to work directly with hearing care providers and their patients to help any patients or providers suffering hardships, the company said.
- For general inquiries and assistance related to Hurricanes Harvey or Irma, please call Phonak Customer Care at 1-800-777-7333.
- Phonak will continue to match all donations for Hurricane relief until September 20.