Message from Dallas Hearing Foundation President, B. Robert Peters M.D.
The Dallas Hearing Foundation would like to extend an invitation to participate in our charitable fundraising gala, Your Ticket to the World of Sound, on November 4th, 2017 at the The Empire Room in Dallas, Texas. Your participation will give the gifts of hearing and speech to children and adults with hearing loss. The Dallas Hearing Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit organization that supports all aspects of hearing services: medical, rehabilitative, education, counseling, and research. Priority is given to children who do not have insurance or other financial resources. Through the Dallas Hearing Foundation, these precious children receive cochlear implants or hearing aids, auditory-verbal therapy, educational services, and counseling. Our specialized team consists of an otologic surgeon, audiologists, a speech-language pathologist, an educational consultant, and a psychologist. With the services we provide, children and adults with hearing loss can pursue their own interests and dreams, rather than being restricted in a world of silence with severe limitations on their educational and employment opportunities.
The vast majority of deaf children are facing a well-documented adulthood of minimal abilities to read, write, or speak English. Subsequent employment opportunities are severely restricted or non-existent for this population. The Dallas Hearing Foundation individualizes each child’s treatment and provides the extraordinary attention needed to optimize their potential to hear, speak, and receive a quality education. We have children in our programs who are receiving a quality education with their hearing peers in mainstream schools, after receiving cochlear implants and auditory-verbal therapy. Mainstreaming deaf children into regular classrooms saves the public school system up to $200,000 per child. In addition, rather than being placed on disability government programs throughout adulthood, deaf individuals who are well-educated and verbally competent in the English language can achieve more gainful employment and independence.
Many lives have been profoundly changed by the services provided by the Dallas Hearing Foundation. Our goal is to be able to give the miracle of hearing and speech to every deaf child and adult who needs our assistance. Please help us to assist these deserving individuals through our main fundraising effort, the Your Ticket to the World of Sound gala. Enclosed you will find additional information on our organization and the ways in which you can donate and forever change the life of a deaf person.
On behalf of the deaf children and adults who are waiting for a miracle, thank you for your time and consideration.
With Sincere Appreciation,
B. Robert Peters, M.D.
President, Dallas Hearing Foundation
Facts about the Dallas Hearing Foundation
- Formed in 1997 as a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation which provides cochlear implants, hearing aids, auditory-verbal therapy, and educational support services based on financial need.
- DHF has provided over $1 million in services to improve the lives of individuals with hearing loss.
- DHF has held a successful fund raising event every year since 2001.
Facts about Deafness
- There are 36 million individuals with hearing loss in the United States.
- Four thousand children are born with hearing loss each year.
- 90% of children with hearing loss are born to normal hearing parents.
- Parents with normal hearing communicate through speaking, and most do not know how to use sign language to communicate with their deaf child.
- Deaf education programs in the public schools usually teach some form of sign language in order to communicate with and educate the students. As a result, few deaf students become proficient in the English language.
- An average reading level of 3rd grade is typical of graduates of deaf education programs in the U.S.
- 45% of deaf individuals do not graduate from high school and only 5% graduate from college.
- A small minority of deaf students complete deaf education programs prepared for independence in adulthood; 60% face either unemployment or severe underemployment.
- Deaf individuals earn only 50% to 70% of what their hearing peers earn, losing an average of $320,000 in earnings during their lifetime.
- Over 50% of deaf adults earn less than $25,000 per year.
- 42% of deaf adults between 18 to 44 years of age are unemployed.
- 70% of deaf individuals rely on government insurance programs such as Medicaid and Medicare.
- Deafness is the most costly single disability in terms of special education costs, averaging $25,000 per year per child, compared to $5,100 for a normal hearing child.
- The average lifetime cost to society of a child born deaf in terms of medical, educational, and productivity losses is $1,020,000.
Facts about Cochlear Implants
A cochlear implant is a small, complex electronic device that helps provide a sense of sound to a person who is profoundly deaf or severely hard of hearing. The implant consists of an external portion that sits behind the ear and a second portion that is surgically placed under the skin (see figure). An implant is comprised of a microphone which picks up sound, a speech processor which selects and arranges sounds, a transmitter and receiver/stimulator which receives signals from the speech processor and converts them into electric impulses, and an electrode array which collects the impulses from the stimulator and sends them to different regions of the auditory nerve.
An implant does not restore normal hearing, but it can give a deaf person a functional representation of sounds in the environment and aid in the understanding of speech.
- Research has shown cochlear implants to be one of the most cost-effective medical treatments of our day, far greater than coronary bypass surgery or kidney dialysis.
- Children with at least two years of cochlear implant experience are placed in mainstream normally hearing classrooms at twice the rate of deaf children without implants. This saves the education system up to $200,000 in cost from first through twelfth grade.
- It costs $40,000 dollars to implant one child during infancy to the age of three years. Statistics show that for every one dollar spent on cochlear implants, society saves $25 in specialized services. This calculates to $1 million in savings per child implanted.