Our basic principles
The Hear the World Foundation is an independent charitable foundation. Comprehensive foundation governance is essential for us. This involves ensuring transparency with regard to our strategy, goals and support activities as well as professionalism in terms of organization and management. To avoid conflicts of interest, an organized procedure for applying for support and selection criteria for projects are clearly defined.
As a member of Swiss Foundations, we operate in line with the basic principles of the Swiss Foundation Code. We see it as our duty to use the funds entrusted to us in accordance with the aims of the foundation and in the most effective way possible.
SUSTAINABLE SUPPORT – A KEY PRIORITY
The aim of the Hear the World Foundation is to enable people all over the world to enjoy better hearing. Every year we receive a large number of applications for support. An essential criterion when it comes to selecting and implementing projects is sustainability, which is why the Hear the World Foundation primarily supports projects that can make a lasting positive impact. The quality of the audiological care provided is a crucial element, and with this in mind, particular attention is paid to the following four aspects:
1) Applying the audiology gold standard for everyone
Fitting children with amplification is a challenge and a big responsibility. Over the years a validated protocol for pediatric fittings has been developed and adopted. We strongly believe that children in low-income countries have the right to receive the same quality of audiological care as those in countries with higher income. We therefore make sure that our project partners have the right training and equipment to diagnose hearing loss, fit and verify the hearing aid fitting in accordance with international standards. We always provide our project partners with the latest hearing aid technology, so they can offer their patients the best possible solution – no matter where they live or how much they earn.
2) Building up local skills and expertise
In all the projects we support worldwide, we are committed to establishing and cultivating the expertise needed on site. This way we can guarantee the provision of long-term audiological care on site and create local jobs too – which is a key part of the sustainable work of any foundation. Expert knowledge is passed on from teams of volunteers of qualified Sonova employees and, wherever necessary, other specialists.
3) Ensuring professional follow-up
To help guarantee a lasting positive impact, we only provide hearing aids if we can ensure that the recipients will also receive regular support from locally based specialists after their hearing aids have been fitted. Audiological care alone is often not enough, especially in the case of children with hearing loss. Supplementary measures such as speech therapy or parental training and involvement are required to help children realize their full potential and to support their language acquisition.
4) Long-term support and monitoring success
We work in long-term partnerships with our project partners across the globe. Our experts help them develop the next logical steps of their project – such as training sessions or buying a new piece of equipment. In doing so, we lay an important foundation to further professionalize the audiological care. Each of our project partners is obliged to provide a detailed report twice a year containing precise details about the progress of their project and their use of funds.