(PURE JOY. Gov. Dennis ‘Delta’ Pineda engages a hearing-impaired child in pleasantries after receiving her free hearing aid from Starkey Hearing Foundation and University of Santo Tomas. Photo courtesy of Jun Jaso/Pampanga PIO)
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO – Governor Dennis ‘Delta’ Pineda is contemplating on providing additional health assistance to hearing-impaired Kapampangans through the support of Starkey Hearing Foundation and University of Santo Tomas (UST).
This is part of the service delivery of Starkey and UST “Connecting to Life (Phase IV),” that the Governor wants to transpire in the province.
Phase IV is a speech-language support, which aims to reintegrate and equip beneficiaries with skills and resources to incorporate hearing into life.
Pineda said he is willing to sponsor trainings by audiologists and speech-language pathologists to teachers, nurses and families of the beneficiaries.
“Yung pagte-train, sabi ko willing ako mag-provide, ang i-shoulder ang expenses ng training. Makapagturo lang tayo, if they need teachers, o mga nurses natin. Para ‘yun namang mga mate-train ngayon ang magte-train sa mga nanay,” he said.
He bared this during the 2-day event of Starkey, UST and Provincial Government of Pampanga, where free hearing aids were given to beneficiaries.
Kevin Ramos, Starkey International Development Director for Asia Pacific Region, said the Governor himself showed interest on the Phase IV program.
“I am so happy that the Government here in Pampanga is so supportive with programs that will benefit every constituent,” he said.
Moreover, Second District Board Member Anthony Joseph Torres said that if this program will be adapted by the Provincial Government of Pampanga, through the initiative of Gov. Pineda, it will lessen the burden of the hearing impaired families to spend money in consulting professionals.
“Malaking tulong ito para madali silang makapunta sa normal set-up. Lalo na kapag tumulong ang Provincial Government, thru Gov. Delta kasi mahal ito, hindi afford ng regular na family,” Torres added.
Meanwhile, the Governor thanked the Starkey Foundation, as well as UST, for extending help and concern to the Kapampangans. He also expressed joy upon seeing benefi ciaries and families happy.
“Masaya, kasi nakita mo ‘yung mukha ng tao. ‘Yung iyak nila kapag nakarinig na. Sometimes, ilang years na silang hindi makarinig. Pero ngayon, mabibigla ka nakakarinig na sila. And then, isa pa rin siyempre, ‘yung halaga. Alam natin kung magkano china-charge sa labas ‘to, minsan 25, 50 [thousand] isang unit. Pero imagine, libre lahat, diba? Kaya ang laki ng pasasalamat ko sa Starkey Foundation headed by Bill Austin. ‘Yung tulong nila sa mga Kapampangan, ang laking bagay,” he furthered.
To date, according to Starkey, more than 3,000 Kapampangans already benefited from the program.