A Preston hearing specialist is travelling to India to help improve the hearing of some of the country’s poorest people.
Emma Haouche, a hearing aid audiologist with Amplifon’s regional team in Preston will visit communities in the state of Gujarat to carry out hearing tests and fit some of 1,000 reconditioned hearing aids.
The aids, donated by Amplifon customers across the UK and Ireland, have been cleaned, assessed and reprogrammed before being sent out. It is part of an initiative organised by De Montfort University’s Square Mile India Project.
Emma, who will graduate from a foundation degree in audiology at De Montfort in January will travel to India as part of DMU Global, the university’s international student enrichment programme.
Along with five other students, she will spend nine days in India putting her clinical skills into practice by offering hearing checks and fitting donated hearing aids at a hospital in the city of Rajkot as well as training staff to undertake basic hearing aid repairs.
She said: “The trip is a fantastic opportunity to put my skills as an audiologist into practice in a very different environment where resources are limited. I’m really looking forward to visiting Gujarat and helping the people there to hear well again, using some of the hearing aids donated by our customers.”
She will also travel to Ahmedabad, the largest city in Gujarat to carry out hearing screening tests in Ramapi No Tekra, an inner city area next to the Gandhi Ashram.
Wendy Stevens, senior audiology lecturer at De Montfort University, said: “Hearing screening projects can transform the lives of people in poorer communities. Hearing loss can be very isolating, so being able to screen for hearing loss and fit hearing aids through programmes like Square Mile India can have a huge impact on people’s lives. I am hoping the trip will enable our students to make a real difference to people in Rajkot and Ahmedabad, and I know they’re all looking forward to it immensely.”