Archives for October 2017

Naven now hears his best thanks to Oticon Medical and Ear Community for donating new Ponto hearing device

Naven Ramirez, BMA age 5 of the Philippines, receives (2) newly donated Oticon Medical Ponto 3’s on October 6th, 2017.

Meet Naven R. Osic.  Navin is a five-year-old boy who was born with bilateral Microtia and Atresia. Naven lives with his mother, Donna and step-father in a small room in the Philippines.  When Donna was pregnant with Naven, she made sure to follow all her doctor’s orders, and be very careful because she wanted her child to be healthy and ready for the world.  She was shocked then, when Naven was born missing both of his ears!  It was the first time Donna had ever seen little ears, and her heart ached for how her son was going to adjust to life.

Fast-forward five years, and Naven started going to a day care school.  He struggled making friends and socializing, and complained to his mother that he couldn’t hear his teacher and couldn’t catch up on his lessons.  Naven was also bullied by his classmates and even some of their parents.  This was when Donna decided she had to take action.  Up until then, she had been unable to afford even the appointments to find out what options were available to help Naven hear.

Donna and Naven met with an ENT at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) and received some heartbreaking news.  The doctor said that because of Naven’s bilateral hearing loss, his speech and hearing would continue to decline and he would struggle more and more in social and educational settings.  They were referred to an audiologist where they discovered that Naven had moderate to severe conductive hearing loss and would need bilateral bone conduction devices to help him hear.

Luckily, someone was watching out for Naven! His audiologists knew about the Ear Community Organization. Donna immediately reached out to Ear Community, and applied for bone conduction devices. On October 6th, 2017, Naven was awarded and fitted with two brand new Ponto 3 bone conduction hearing devices that were donated by Oticon Medical through the Ear Community Organization.  We wish to offer a very special thank you to Icee Piedad with Oticon Medical in the Philippines.  We could not have made this possible without all her help navigating the medical system in a different country. Icee not only helped us get the devices to the Philippines, but she also donated her time and services to help fit and program Naven’s new Oticon Medical bone anchored hearing systems. Thank you especially to Oticon Medical for donating the two new Ponto Plus hearing devices to Naven.  He would not be hearing today and so much better at home and in school if it were not for Oticon Medical.

Donna said, “Naven quickly responded to Ms. Icee when he put on his 2 brand-new Ponto 3’s.  I’m so much happy for my son because your prestigious group Ear Community chose Naven to have a BAHA.  I will take care his Ponto like I care (of) Naven.”  The best part was when she said, “Naven now is very happy, he clearly hear(s) what we are saying. He can easily keep up (with) the lesson when he is at school.”

A very special thank you to Alan Raffauf, Vice President of Marketing for Oticon Medical US, for choosing to donate the new Oticon Medical Ponto 3 to Ear Community so that they could be donated to Naven to help him hear better in and outside of the school classroom. Thank you for everyone’s support and for helping Ear Community continue with its mission of helping individuals with Microtia and Atresia. Oticon Medical believes in helping individuals with hearing loss so that they can live a better quality of life. Oticon Medical is a well-respected international hearing device manufacturer that is a part of the “William Demant Group [which has] 100-plus years of experience in audiology and sound processing and established manufacturing and logistics infrastructure.”

“We are so happy that we could help Naven hear better around the clock so he can now keep up in school, make friends, and enjoy quality time with his family.  He deserves to live the life he was meant to live and enjoy being a happy little five-year-old.  Thank you to everyone who was involved in making this all possible for Naven to obtain her hearing devices.” – Naven’s Family.

We are over the moon that you can hear so much better now Naven!  We hope you thrive in school and hear the sounds of everyday now.
Hugs from all of us at Ear Community

National Microtia Awareness Day is November 9th!

Ear Community ad logo for celebrating National Microtia Awareness Day.

National Microtia Awareness Day is coming up on November 9th!  This is a day for children and adults (and their families) who were born with Microtia and Atresia.  Many schools across the nation will be participating and helping raise awareness with their students.  Parents will be visiting classrooms, speaking about Microtia (underdeveloped or missing outer ears) and Atresia (hearing loss due to underdeveloped ear canals), and hearing devices to raise awareness.  Many medical professionals plan to raise awareness by briefly dedicating a slide about Microtia and Atresia and the options for Microtia and Atresia on social media.  Hearing device and medical device companies also look forward to blogging on social media about Microtia and Atresia in hopes that everyone will learn a little bit about this congenital birth condition.

To help raise awareness, the Ear Community Organization has some awareness items available for November 9th:

Order deadline for the United States is October 25th, 2017.
– To order Ear Community National Awareness Day t-shirts, click here.
– To order National Microtia Awareness Day awareness bracelets (vintage Swarovski and more), click here.
– To order National Microtia Awareness Day awareness ribbons, pins, and car decals, click here.

  • For t-shirts, your orders can be placed through the MicrotiaTees website.
  • For the bracelets, decals, and wrist bands you can order through the Ear Community DONATE link (see directions on how to order via each item).We are excited to raise awareness together with everyone on November 9th!

National Microtia Awareness Day Ribbon for Ear Community Organization – November 9th, 2017.

Approximately one child in every 9,000 (in the United States) is born with Microtia (when the ear(s) do not fully develop during the 1st trimester of pregnancy).  Often affecting one ear or both ears, Microtia is diagnosed at birth, but there is no understanding as to why Microtia occurs. Facial challenges, hearing loss and the longing for social acceptance are some of the daily concerns for those who are born with Microtia.  Children are born into this world not knowing they are any different from anyone else. Many with Microtia share similar stories of curious stares, bullying, or awkwardness.  Individual personalities, social conditioning, available treatments and bullying all impact how every child develops and copes as an adult.  By removing unnecessary boundaries and replacing them with resources, tools, and support, we can eliminate bullying and clear the way for an even more successful future.

It is the intention of Microtia Awareness Day to help promote public awareness.  As the mother of a child who has microtia, and the founder of Ear Community, Melissa Tumblin’s hope is that families who have new babies born with microtia will leave the hospital armed with more answers than questions, and their dreams for their children intact.  “I think that if more people learn about microtia and atresia, that they will be kinder and more accepting.  It is also my intention for anyone who is born without an ear(s) to realize that they are not alone.  Through this national day, they can find out about organizations and resources for information and support.”  Since 2010, the Ear Community Organization has brought over 8,000 people together from around the world at the organization’s events making it possible to share experiences and resources. The community is made up of not only children and adults with Microtia and their families, but teachers, advocates, and medical professionals from around the world who foster awareness and assistance for this amazing group of people. Board members for Ear Community either have the condition themselves or a family member who does, so they have close personal experience with the obstacles from a myriad of perspectives.

Celebrate with us on National Microtia Awareness Day on November 9th, 2017.

Thank you and you are not alone with Microtia and Atresia.
Ear Community

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