MINNEAPOLIS—Former President George W. Bush recently joined the Starkey Hearing Foundation’s global effort to provide hearing care to people in need. Earlier this month, he personally worked with foundation professionals in providing customized hearing devices to 222 people in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
The foundation was started more than 20 years ago by William Austin, founder of Starkey Hearing Technologies. It donates and fits more than 100,000 hearing aids a year to people around the world.
George W. Bush is not the first former president to team up with the Starkey Foundation. For the past few years, his predecessor, Bill Clinton, has appeared at the foundation’s So the World May Hear Awards Gala. Moreover, as a member of President Clinton’s Global Initiative, the Starkey Hearing Foundation has pledged to fit 1 million hearing aids this decade.
Bush joined the Starkey Foundation on the first day of a two-week mission through Tanzania and Malawi, during which it is providing more than 9400 hearing aids. Austin noted, “President Bush has done amazing things across Africa in HIV/AIDS and cancer prevention and treatment, and we are incredibly grateful that he supports us in our fight for better hearing.”
Bush’s daughter, Barbara Bush, the CEO and co-founder of Global Health Corps has also joined Starkey on several missions. Global Health Corps fellows support Starkey’s work across Africa, and Barbara will be honored for her charitable efforts at the 2013 Awards Gala on July 28 in St. Paul.