Hearing, Healing and Hope in Afghanistan: The Bayat Foundation and Starkey Hearing Foundation Partnership Restores the Hearing of 1544 Afghan Children and Adults

Foundations Forge Four-Day Nationwide Joint Hearing Care Mission Serving Residents of Kabul, Herat and Mazar-E-Sharif

KABUL, Afghanistan, Sept. 9, 2015 / PRNewswire — 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.

About the Bayat Foundation:
Since 2005, the US-based Bayat Foundation, a 501 c (3) charitable organization, has promoted the well-being of the Afghan people. Founded and directed by Ehsanollah Bayat and Fatema Bayat, the Foundation has contributed to more than 300 projects dedicated to improving the quality of life for the youth, women, poor, and elderly of Afghanistan; including construction of 13 maternity hospitals that have now treated over 1,000,000 mothers and babies. Projects have included the construction of new facilities and sustainable infrastructure in needy regions, and the promotion of health, education, economic, and cultural programs. In addition to his charitable initiatives, Ehsanollah Bayat founded Afghan Wireless (AWCC) in 2002, which was the first GSM wireless and Internet Service Provider in Afghanistan, and later established Ariana Radio and Television Network (ATN), which includes Ariana Radio (FM 93.5). For more information, please email info@bayatfoundation.org.

About Starkey Hearing Foundation:
Starkey Hearing Foundation uses hearing as a vehicle to reflect caring and change lives around the world. Disabling hearing loss affects more than 360 million people, including 32 million children, worldwide, yet many do not have access to the hearing devices that can help them. Starkey Hearing Foundation fits and gives more than 100,000 hearing aids annually, and as a member of President Clinton’s Global Initiative, it has pledged to fit one million hearing aids this decade. In addition to giving the gift of hearing through worldwide hearing missions, Starkey Hearing Foundation promotes hearing health awareness and education through the Listen Carefully campaign and provides hearing instruments to low-income Americans through the Hear Now program. For more information on Starkey Hearing Foundation, visit www.starkeyhearingfoundation.org.

PLEASE CONTACT:
For Afghan Wireless:
Alberto Lopez
+1.917.330.4510
a.lopez@tsiglobe.com