Next week, Yellowknife students in grades 4 to 6 will learn how to protect their hearing. Sound Sense NWT is starting a learning program for students which aims to increase awareness on hearing loss and how to prevent it. The first step is to teach the risks of loud noises.
Two classroom sessions will be held on Wednesday, November 28th in Yellowknife schools. There will also be a session on Tuesday to introduce the Sound Sense model to teachers and others that are interested.
Keith MacNeill, Sound Sense NWT’s Program Manager says there are still a few places left for those interested in next week sessions and that they have big plans for the future. “We hope to get the program delivered in every NWT school within two years.”
Around 30 per cent of children and youth in NWT communities may already be suffering hearing loss. That number is the same when it comes to members of indigenous communities.
CHHA-NWT President Bill Braden says they believe this is a serious issue facing northerners and young people and that raising awareness for them is a huge step in helping to protect their ears.
“The good news is that noise-induced hearing loss is preventable. The success of the Sound Sense program shows when young people learn the consequences of exposure to loud noises, they usually choose to protect their hearing.”
Sound Sense was created to encourage young people and parents to be aware of the damage noises can create, and to protect against future hearing loss. It is a joint project by the Hearing Foundation of Canada and the NWT Branch of the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association.