Eliminating isolation and giving back.

HearCare Connection, Inc. is a nonprofit hearing center providing hearing healthcare to  low-income adults and under-served children in our community.  Our desire is that no person is prevented from full participation in life due to hearing loss.

Our mission is to build the self-worth of individuals by restoring their hearing potential and providing them with opportunities to engage with their communities through service to others.

We are not a free clinic.

We are not a free clinic.  We operate on a reduced fee, sliding scale basis to make hearing healthcare affordable.  We rely on the support of our community through grants, donations, corporate sponsorship and volunteers to make our programs sustainable.  In return, our unique Circle of Giving model gives our patients the opportunity to give back to the community through volunteer hours.  For every hearing aid our patients receive through HearCare Connection, they return a designated amount of volunteer hours to their community.  This is our way of saying “Thank you” to the funders and donors that make it possible for our patients to receive the “Gift of Hearing”.

To see important documents and publications, click here.

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Something has to change.

 

HearCare Connection has identified an unmet need in our community for hearing testing and treatment for low-income, uninsured, and under-insured individuals. Our program is unique and not duplicated by any other agency in our region.

Ken and Nora Stewart started seeing the need for a hearing health clinic in 2008 as they began to see the effects of a struggling economy on their patients and their ability to access hearing healthcare.  Cutbacks and loss of income made getting treatment for hearing loss (hearing aids) less affordable and accessible. They struggled with not being able to assist these patients in getting the help they needed.   They found it heartbreaking that the gap of people falling between the cracks was growing.

“There was such a direct need and it was a need that I could fill because of my experience in the industry.  People were not receiving the help they needed simply because of finances.  I could do something about that.”   - Nora Stewart
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HearCare Connection, Inc. was founded in October of 2011 as a nonprofit hearing center that would help to fill this need. We received a 501(c)3 approval in record time, started our reduced fee, sliding scale clinic and began seeing patients.. We believe that God was on our side during this process, bringing all the right people to meet us on our journey at all the right times.

Since our inception in 2011, HearCare Connection has seen over 375 patients ranging from newborn to the elderly.  Our hearing clinic has grown from a six day a month clinic to a twelve day a month clinic.  We have provided over 1500 hearing screenings in our community and our patients have given over 4000 hours of community service as part of our Circle of Giving model.

The mission of HearCare Connection remains the same: to build the self-worth of individuals by restoring their hearing potential and providing them with opportunities to engage with their communities through service to others.

We are especially thankful to all our partners, donors, community foundations, volunteer audiologists and hearing care providers who brought this vision to fruition.

"You don't have to think about doing the right thing.  If you're for the right thing, you won't even have to think about it."  - Maya Angelou

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We believe so passionately in the power of community that we have implemented a Circle of Giving model into our patient care that puts our mission into action.

As a nonprofit, people often assume that we are a "Free" hearing clinic.  While we offer free hearing screenings for general prevention and awareness for the community, we do not offer full audiology services or hearing aids for free.

We reduce our fees and then utilize a sliding scale fee system to further reduce costs for those with even lower income than others which makes our hearing aids and services affordable for everyone.

We've taken it one step further.

We rely on donations, grants, volunteers, and other means of support to provide services and treatment for our patients.  In exchange for this generous public support, patients who qualify financially and are in need of hearing devices sign a VOLUNTEER COMMITTMENT form to give back their time and talents to others.  They commit to completing a specified number of service hours within their community for either other public agencies, nonprofit organizations, churches, or schools as a way to "give back" to the community that is providing them with the Gift of Hearing.

This is our way of saying "Thank You" to our community for making it possible for our patients to receive the Gift of Hearing.  Our Circle of Giving puts our motto into action!

 
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Everybody can be great... because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.
— Martin Luther King, Jr.
 
 
 

Bringing together a united front of people on mission.

Our team and our donors come together under a single, unifying purpose:  that no person is prevented from full participation in life due to hearing loss.  Here is our highly qualified team who works to make this happen.

 

Anna Bogdon

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Executive Director of HearCare Connection, Inc.

Anna joined the HearCare family in October of 2012.  She is a native of Fort Wayne, Indiana and has worked extensively in non-profit mission work both locally and globally.  Her desire to help lead people into an “abundant life” fits into the passion of HearCare Connection: that no person is prevented from full participation in life due to hearing loss.

Anna brings over 15 years of administrative service to her position. Her mission work has led her to three different continents within the last six years.  She is currently serving on the board of John Anastasia Ministries and has a passion for orphan-care & adoption advocacy.  Anna is a very proud “mama” of one biological child and a “sponsor mom” of a child in Tanzania, Africa through Compassion International.

 

Dr. Tina Sheehan

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Audiologist

Dr. Sheehan is a licensed audiologist, holding a masters degree (M.S.) from Purdue University and a doctoral degree (Au.D.) from Salus University.  She has been practicing in the Fort Wayne, Indiana area for the past 15 years, specializing in pediatric and adult diagnostics and hearing aid fittings, including Auditory Processing Disorders.

Her unique philosophy to support our community through education, diagnosis and hearing rehabilitation led her to open her own practice in 2011.  Focus Audiology (www.focusaudiology.com) offers a healthy balance of patient and professional education, comprehensive diagnostic services and rehabilitative hearing aid care.

Dr. Sheehan started out as a volunteer audiologist with HearCare Connection, investing her talents in many of HearCare Connection’s patients.  We are excited to have had her share her expertise as our primary staff audiologist since April of 2014.

Tina is married with two sons and a native to Fort Wayne.  Her youngest son was diagnosed with hearing loss in 2011.

 

Stephanie Webb

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Patient Care Coordinator

A native of Fort Wayne, Indiana, Stephanie started at HearCare Connection as an intern and then moved to a volunteer position after completing her internship.  In 2012, Stephanie graduated from MedTech College with an Associate of Applied Science degree for Medical Billing and Coding.  She was hired as our Patient Care Coordinator in November of 2012.

Stephanie brings over 20 years of customer service experience to our company.  When asked why she chose to invest in HearCare Connection her answer was that she thoroughly enjoys patient care and values the model that HearCare Connection brings to encourage volunteerism in our community.

An active member of South Park Baptist Church, Stephanie is a mom of two and an active football sports fanatic.  “Go Bears!”

 
 
 

Hear are just some of the stories from people who have received the gift of hearing.

Gary

“About a year ago I noticed I was having a lot of trouble hearing my grandchildren, particularly the two younger girls. I just couldn’t hear them at all and was constantly asking them to speak up.  They ordered a hearing exam, found that I was down to about 68% hearing in that remaining good ear.  And, uh, I didn’t know what to do.  Someone my wife works with had referred us to HearCare and we came in and got to discussing pricing and stuff and it was suggested that I apply for the (HearCare Connection’s) program.  And I did, and was accepted.  I have to say that the ability to hear again in that right ear makes a huge difference to the quality of my life and I have to just thank the people here for everything that they’ve done for me.  One of the biggest difference that the hearing aid is making for me is to hear again things I had forgotten all about.  After being fitted for the new hearing aid I could hear water running, I’m looking forward to things like traffic sounds, birds singing, things I remember being able to hear at one time and slowly have just lost the ability to do so.” 

 

Monica

“I lost my hearing because my ex-husband hit me.  I tried many different products from stores to hear better but none of them worked.  I couldn’t listen to life.  One day my friend told me about this place (HearCare Connection) and maybe they could help me.  I said ‘Maybe,’ because nothing helped me before.  I came in here (I speak Spanish) and she helped me translate to English.  Here, I have a big hope…. I’m happy somebody helped!  I say thanks so much for fixing my life.  Now I listen to everything around me.  I say thanks so much for making my life better!”

 

Mohammed

“I had a severe hearing problem.  When I got (my) hearing aid from HearCare Connection it made my life easy.  Now I can hear everything easily.  HearCare Connection are doing a wonderful job and the people are very good and friendly.  I wish them to continue their effort to make people’s life easy.

 

Frances

“We get together, ten or twelve of us, and go dancing.  I used to not hear when they are talking to me.  Now with my hearing aids, I tell them, ‘Be careful what you say, I can hear you now!’ I even tell my kids that too.  And they say, ‘Mom you can hear me!’ and I say, ‘Yes, I can.’”

 

Janet

“I am very happy with the service I received.  My hearing has improved.  I am able to hear much better.  Each of my hearing aids feels comfortable for wearing.  Thank you so much!

 

Gary

“About a year ago I noticed I was having a lot of trouble hearing my grandchildren, particularly the two younger girls. I just couldn’t hear them at all and was constantly asking them to speak up.  They ordered a hearing exam, found that I was down to about 68% hearing in that remaining good ear.  And, uh, I didn’t know what to do.  Someone my wife works with had referred us to HearCare and we came in and got to discussing pricing and stuff and it was suggested that I apply for the (HearCare Connection’s) program.  And I did, and was accepted.  I have to say that the ability to hear again in that right ear makes a huge difference to the quality of my life and I have to just thank the people here for everything that they’ve done for me.  One of the biggest difference that the hearing aid is making for me is to hear again things I had forgotten all about.  After being fitted for the new hearing aid I could hear water running, I’m looking forward to things like traffic sounds, birds singing, things I remember being able to hear at one time and slowly have just lost the ability to do so.” 

 
 
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Enoch

He came to us with his heart on his sleeve and praying that we would be able to help.  Enoch began to lose his hearing at a very young age and relied on reading lips to fill the void of actually hearing speech. Then a devastating blow: Enoch lost his eyesight.  With no way to read people's lips anymore, his ability to hear became paramount. 

Now 55 years old, Enoch has been declared legally blind. He struggled for years with an inadequate hearing aid.  He knew he needed help.  He just didn't know where to turn. Your gift gave him the opportunity he was searching for. 

Enoch reached out to HCC in hopes that we could grant him a miracle. Throughout his hearing aid fitting appointment, he was amazed. He expressed his gratitude for this organization and the people dedicated to it. Never has a patient shown so much fulfillment by simply having their new hearing aids activated for the first time. 

"Can I just say, I love you."- Enoch  

We can only imagine how he is currently re-engaging in his world and it's all because of you!  Your gift made it possible for Enoch to receive the help that he desperately needed.  Never take for granted how your financial contribution literally changes lives.

MONICA

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Monica came to HCC as the first patient through our sliding fee scale clinic.  Listen to her story: "I lost my hearing because my ex-husband hit me.  I tried many different products from stores to hear better but none of them worked.  I couldn't listen to life.  One day my friend told me about this place (HearCare Connection) and maybe they could help me.  I said, "maybe." because nothing helped me before.  I came in here and my friend help me translate to English (I speak Spanish).  Here I have a big hope!"

Monica comes in regularly for her clean and check appointments.  Over the years, she has brought numerous people to our clinic.  She often translates for them now or helps them acquire their volunteer service hours for their new hearing aids.  

Then another tragedy - Monica was diagnosed with cancer. Through her battle she's had her family by her side and this dreaded disease hasn't stopped her generous heart from advocating for HearCare Connection:  

"Thank you so much because here is this place how my life has changed. My life has changed all around to me. thanks girls. I listen to my family I listen the bird I listen the life now"

And Monica can keep on listening because five years after her first set of hearing aids with HearCare Connection, Monica came back through our program to receive her next set of hearing aids.

Your support of our clinic not only helps us reach new patients every week,  but we have the privilege of continuing life with patients who have been with us all along the way!

 

 
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Evelyn

Evelyn was an newborn when she was diagnosed with hearing loss.  By the age of two, she received her first cochlear implant.  Six months later, she started talking.  And hasn't stopped since.

At HCC we are very blessed to be able to work with the programming of cochlear devices and the counselling of patients after implants.  This little cutie did so well on her first implant that her parents elected to have a second one done.

Now in Kindergarten, Evelyn is mainstreamed into the educational system ( with speech therapy support ).  Her resilience and her ability to excel with the help of her cochlear implants shows how important early diagnosis of hearing loss is.  

Together we are making a difference as we raise the importance of hearing healthcare in young children.  

 
 

Meet Harry!

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Bart

You may have already heard Bart's story but it's too funny not to tell again.  Bart came to HCC in 2016 for his first set of hearing aids.  For his volunteer service hours, he decided he would volunteer at the animal shelter.  

Bart dislikes cats.

Yet, his job at the shelter was to bathe cats.

"I had alot of fun doing my volunteer hours.  I went to the Humane Society and they had me clean and wash cats.  I enjoyed cleaning about sixty of them... and I don't even like cats."

But what he did next is what makes Bart truly remarkable...

"At the end, I bought one of the cats.  I'm NOT bringing it home, but I bought it so someone else could adopt him that would be have been able to afford it."

When we see our model work outside of what we do on a daily basis - we know that we have something truly special at work in the lives of our patients. 

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Adalyn

Adalyn was eleven years old when she was fit with hearing aids through HearCare Connection. This would be her third pair of hearing aids since she was diagnosed with hearing loss at six weeks of age.  

She chose to get some very cool Turquoises and Purple Ear Molds to stand out and was excited to see how these new hearing aids would help her hear better in school.

She didn't take a back seat to her hearing healthcare.  Adalyn volunteered along with her mom at United Way to complete her required volunteer hours.  She worked on the Pizza King fundraiser, Santa Night and Stuff a Bus!  She loved it and plans to keep volunteering with her mom.

When you ask Adalyn what sound she is most looking forward to hearing, her answer may surprise you: she misses hearing her sisters squeal and scream around the house when they are playing.  

Adalyn thinks these hearing aids sound better than any she's ever had.  "Everything is good.  I like them."

Adalyn, you're great! We like you!  We hope you keep pushing for your dreams!

Three days.  Three babies.  Three more reasons to GIVE HEAR