Thousand Oaks Rotary Club Global Grant - Hearing Aids for Forty Children in Tijuana
 
In Rotary year 2014-2015, the Tijuana Rotary Club partnered with  the Thousand Oaks Rotary Club on the hearing aids grant in Tijuana .  Due to multiple corrections required by the international foundation, the grant was delayed until Rotary year 2015-2016.  (The Thousand Oaks Rotary was instrumental in helping with these corrections.)  After the corrections were made, the Rotary Foundation okayed the grant and the grant was funded - and the hearing aid installation date was set to March 1, 2017.
On March 1, 2017, The Thousand Oaks Rotary Club was invited to Tijuana to witness over 40 children receive hearing aids supplied by global grant GG1526506. This grant also included speech therapy and computers to train the children in their Spanish language. There were 4 of us from The Thousand Oaks Rotary Club who attended this amazing event. 
Two highlights from the event stood out:
 
The Tijuana and Thousand Oaks Rotary Clubs have partnered on over 20 grants over the last 14 years.  In this partnership we have raised over one million US dollars to aid the underprivileged people of Tijuana Mexico  and Ventura County California.  One of these projects was to supply hearing aids to underprivileged children in Tijuana .  This project was started about 20 years ago by woman spouses of men members of the Tijuana Rotary Club - with monies they raised through various fund raisers.  These woman connected with the "Asociacion Para Los Ninos De Tijuana AC" (an organization that helps children of Tijuana who can not afford medical services).  At the same time they were introduced to Dr. Sanchez (an audiologist who diagnoses hearing problems and fits and adjusts hearing aids in children). 
  1. A two-year-old child was brought to Dr. Sanchez by his mother for hearing aids.  As soon as the doctor began probing in his ears, the boy started to cry - and continued to cry throughout the installation until his mother comforted him.  After his mother held him close, the boy stopped crying - and once he stopped, he began to hear voice chatter (including his mother talking).  This was the first time the boy could hear.  Being aware of this, he smiled at his mother.  This was a sight to behold.
  2. The second child was a seven-year-old girl suffering from a fast aging sickness (we believe it was "Benjamin Button Disease") - she also came to Dr. Sanchez for hearing aids.  The child was no larger than 30 inches tall - and probably weighed about 25 pounds.  This is the first time I have seen someone with this sickness.
All in all this was a great event.  We invite all Rotarians in our district to attend the next event.  We will announce it as soon as the event is arranged. 
Matt Lallo,
Rotary Club of Thousand Oaks
 
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