Run­ning for McKen­zie

Central Leader - - FRONT PAGE - By MON­ICA TISCHLER

McKEN­ZIE Joyce-Quinn is ex­posed to an ex­cit­ing new world of sound and op­por­tu­nity as she plays in the gar­den of her home.

The five-year-old has pro­gres­sive hear­ing loss and re­ceived a cochlear im­plant in her left ear last month.

That means she can now clearly hear sounds most of us take for granted – like ci­cadas on a sum­mer af­ter­noon.

The new tech­nol­ogy will also en­able her to go swim­ming with her bud­dies at school.

‘‘I love swim­ming and I’m ex­cited to go with my friends,’’ McKen­zie says.

A cochlear im­plant is an elec­tronic de­vice sur­gi­cally im­planted through the scalp di­rectly be­hind the ear.

McKen­zie has re­ceived on-go­ing sup­port from The Hear­ing House in Green­lane since she was fit­ted with hear­ing aids at 10 months old.

The or­gan­i­sa­tion helps chil­dren with hear­ing loss to lis­ten and speak with reg­u­lar au­di­ol­ogy ap­point­ments and ther­apy ses­sions.

It is among char­i­ties ben­e­fit­ing from money raised through the an­nual Ports of Auck­land Round the Bays fun run and walk on Sun­day.

It will re­ceive $28,000 for new equip­ment in­clud­ing a tym­pano- me­ter and a au­diome­ter – both vi­tal tools in as­sess­ing and di­ag­nos­ing hear­ing loss.

McKen­zie’s mother Donna Quinn will run the 8.4km event and says the or­gan­i­sa­tion has been sup­port­ive in her daugh­ter’s de­vel­op­ment.

‘‘McKen­zie will re­ceive au­dio ther­apy classes from The Hear­ing House at school so she can re­learn new sounds that come with her cochlear im­plant.’’

Ms Quinn also has pro­gres­sive hear­ing loss, a ge­netic trait that’s af­fected four gen­er­a­tions of women in her fam­ily in­clud­ing her mum Yvonne.

Each woman has a cochlear im­plant.

McKen­zie, who lives in Massey, still wears a hear­ing aid in her right ear to bal­ance out sounds and keep her nerves stim­u­lated if she de­cides to get an­other im­plant when she’s older.

The Hear­ing House fundrais­ing man­ager Mary Jane Boland says early di­ag­no­sis is cru­cial to a child’s de­vel­op­ment and dence.

‘‘With­out the sup­port here, chil­dren wouldn’t be able to learn vi­tal lan­guage and ed­u­ca­tion skills to take them through to main­stream ed­u­ca­tion,’’ she says.

Ports of Auck­land Round the Bays starts at 9.30am.

It’s a joint col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween the Auck­land Jog­gers Club and Fair­fax Me­dia, owner of the Cen­tral Leader and its par­ent com­pany, Sub­ur­ban News­pa­pers.

Reg­is­tra­tion pro­ceeds will help sup­port other char­i­ties in­clud­ing Ra­dio Lol­lipop, Cys­tic Fi­bro­sis Auck­land Branch, Crohn’s and Col­i­tis New Zealand, Raukatauri Mu­sic Ther­apy Trust, Kid­sline and Fair­fax First Books.

confi- You can win tick­ets to the New Zealand FIM Speed­way Grand Prix at Western Springs – P3

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