Gages Lake, IL March 2012
Tressa and Keith Woosley have traveled to the Special Education District of Lake County with their son, Casey, to get a new hearing aid. Casey is 6 years old and is looking forward to getting his new hearing aids. “I got to choose what color I want!” said Casey.
Families like the Woosleys are very thankful that they have an opportunity to receive new aids. “Without the assistance of the Help Them to Hear Program it would be impossible to provide these for Casey” says Dad, Keith. “They are just so expensive.”
The Help Them to Hear program was started in 2008 by David and Donna Raye, owners of the Goddard School in Third Lake.“The program was created to help raise the needed funds to ensure that every Lake County student who cannot afford hearing aids or other hearing assistive technology gets the financial and practical help they need, “said Raye, SEDOL Foundation board chair. “We started the program with $10,000 and we have assisted 16 families since then. We welcome other individuals and businesses in Lake County to add to the restricted fund. All donations go straight to helping local school children enjoy enhanced learning and quality of life.”
SEDOL Audiologist Colleen Armgardt places the new hearing aids on Casey’s ears. “How does that sound?” she asks.
“Good!” Casey responds.
“The new hearing aids, coupled with FM technology, will allow Casey to hear the teacher directly into his hearing aid. The teacher wears a microphone around their neck and for Casey it will be as if his teacher is always next to him talking. This helps the kids to stay involved, learn and not miss anything in class,” explains Armgardt.
With all the advances in technology, new aids are not just placed in the students ears. They spend some time with their Audiologist before getting the hearing aids and they work with a computer program to get the sound levels just right. After wearing the new ones for a while Casey will return to see if any adjustments are needed.
The Audiology Department is so thrilled with this program they are creating a team to walk in the 2nd Annual 5K/10K Run & Family Walk September 15, 2012 at Independence Grove in Libertyville. “We hope to raise some more money to keep this program alive,” said Armgardt.
There are currently more than 2,600 children in the Lake County School system with physical, mental and emotional disabilities that require individualized services not covered by taxpayer dollars. To find out how you can support the “Help Them To Hear” program or other programs sponsored by the SEDOL Foundation, explore this website or call the SEDOL Foundation’s Executive Director Ann Subry at 847-548-7032.