LISTENING TO THE FUTURE
There is always something to learn just by listening. However, for some children like Karim, this might be a challenge to overcome. Karim (Alias Name) has a hearing impairment and wears hearing aids in both of his ears.
It was in the Fall of 2022 when the “Back to the Future” team met the 12-year-old Syrian boy during outreach and needs assessment work in Beirut. Shortly after that, in November 2022, Karim entered the Basic Literacy and Numeracy class in the “Back to the Future” center in Zoukak Blat in Beirut.
In the beginning, Karim faced challenges in actively participating in the activities, as he used to wear his hearing aids occasionally in class. Noticing this, the inclusion officer contacted his caregivers to discover that his current hearing aids were inadequate for his needs.
As a result, an immediate intervention plan was set. Karim was referred to specialists for an audiogram and received new devices provided by the project. He was also provided with speech and language therapy sessions to enhance his pronunciation. On the other hand, adjustments and recommendations were included in the teaching approaches at the center to support the child.
To ensure the involvement of the caregivers in the therapy sessions, the family received taxi transportation to facilitate their attendance at all the sessions.
“When I grow up, I want to become a barber” Karim clearly expressed when asked about his future dream job.
Following the intervention, significant improvements were observed in Karim’s confidence as well as his academic performance as his hearing devices are no longer a barrier for his participation in the class.
Creating a comfortable and inclusive learning environment for children is one of the missions of the “Back to the Future” project that is implemented by AVSI and Terre des Hommes Italy in Lebanon, and funded by EU humanitarian aid .