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10/28/2018  |   9:30 AM - 10:30 AM   |  Kramer Lecture Theater 3

Local Capacity Building: The Key to Sustainable Charity Work

As the leading provider of hearing solutions, Sonova's vision is to create a world in which everybody can enjoy the benefits of hearing and live without limitations. The Hear the World Foundation (HTWF), a Sonova corporate foundation, is turning this vision into reality for people in need: For over ten years, the Hear the World Foundation has been giving hope to children and their parents by way of access to audiological care, hearing solutions and speech therapy. The aim of the HTWF 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 for selecting and implementing projects is sustainability. The quality of audiological care provided is a crucial element of sustainability, and attention is paid to the potential for: high quality evidence-based practice; long-term capacity-building; outcome-monitoring. In Malawi, since 2011, HTWF has provided support for the building and equipping of the ABC Hearing Clinic and Training Center (ABC HCTC) in Lilongwe. The facility was set-up through EARS Inc., an Australian NGO. A key aspect of their activities was to ensure long-term sustainability recognizing that this can only be achieved if Malawian audiologists run the clinic independently in the long-term. This is why ABC HCTC has been successfully training since 2012 audiology assistants. To provide long-term leadership, HTWF provided funding for two students to undertake an Audiology MSc in the U.K. This long-term, well planned capacity building has now enabled the clinic to be fully under local management. We would like to highlight this project as an impressive example of what can be achieved through very specific and targeted charitable support that is set-up with a long-term view – always with the aim in mind to enable independent, local management of the project.

  • • The participant will be able to state the benefits of local capacity building versus “fly in, fly out” missions
  • • The participant will be able to identify the need for solid training
  • • The participant will be able to identify needs for a long-term project view that is built on strong partnerships


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Ora Buerkli (POC,Primary Presenter), Hear the World Foundation,;
Ora Buerkli received her Msc in Audiology from San Francisco State University. After holding diverse positions in pediatric and clinical audiology she joined Phonak in 1984. During her time with Phonak she held different positions in Audiology, Product and Brand Management. She is currently VP Global Audiology. Ora has been a member of the board of directors of the Hear the World Foundation from its inception. In this capacity she has been giving professional input to the board and key projects sponsored by the foundation.


Financial -

Nonfinancial -


Financial - No relevant financial relationship exists.