To celebrate Hearing Awareness Week, the partner organisations of the Australian Hearing Hub (AHH) hosted an open house event on Saturday 23 August.
The event was opened by distinguished guest The Hon. Jillian Skinner MP. She explained that “it is important to host community events to raise awareness of hearing health.” She went on to say “The Australian Hearing Hub is a great example of collaboration. It brings together experts in hearing to work together to positively impact people’s lives.” The formal proceedings also included a welcome from Professor Janet Greeley and an address by Professor Harvey Dillon, Director of National Acoustic Laboratories.
Professor Dillon said “that the Australian Hearing Hub in particular, and Macquarie University in general, has all the disciplines and expertise necessary to investigate how we can make sure that hearing loss never gets in the way of children achieving normal language ability and so life opportunities.”
In the formal welcome proceedings, two clients from Australian Hearing also told their personal stories of growing up with hearing loss to the audience.
The Australian Hearing Hub Open House event attracted nearly 300 people. The event provided opportunities for free hearing tests for children in the Macquarie University Speech and Hearing Clinic and adult hearing screening through Australian Hearing. During the event a total of 100 free hearing tests/screenings were completed.
The tours of the anechoic chamber and MQ photonics laser micromachining demonstrations were very popular with over 120 people signing up to have the opportunity to see both state of the art facilities in action.
Children had fun on the jumping castle, face painting and also doing arts and crafts with the Centre for Emotional Health and The Shepherd Centre.
Experts provided short informative talks, which included:
• Professor Harvey Dillon, National Acoustic Laboratories – Hearing matters; what stops children hearing well in the classroom
• Professor Greg Leigh, Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children – Newborn Hearing Screening
• Jim Hungerford, The Shepherd Centre – Personal stories of growing up with hearing loss
• Katherine Revius, Macquarie University Child Language Lab – Research areas in early language development
• Dr Lauren McLellan, Centre for Emotional Health – Top 5 tips for managing your child’s anxiety
• Associate Professor Genevieve McArther, ARC Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders – Top tips for helping children with dyslexia
• Dr Elisabeth Harrison, Macquarie University Speech and Hearing Clinic – The power of speech
• Dr Mridula Sharma, Macquarie University Speech and Hearing Clinic – Why is listening in noise so difficult
• Dr Phillip Chang, Ear Nose and Throat Surgeon – Hearing tomorrow: How to protect your health at home, work and play
• Greg Lawrence, The HEARing CRC – The Interactive Ear: Hearing loss and hearing technology made easy
• Amy Coggins, Macquarie University Centre for Emotional Health – Kids need a good night’s sleep: Facts, figures and tips for parents
Overall the feedback from the event was extremely positive.
The Australian Hearing Hub is an initiative of the Australian Government being conducted as part of the Education Investment Fund.