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TV Stars Have an Emotionally Extreme Makeover Thanks to Bill Austin and the Starkey Foundation

The ABC Television show Extreme Makeover Home Edition changes lives every week by turning out-dated houses into state of the art homes. The beneficiaries of the November 7, 2005 episode of the show were a family of four that included three people with significant hearing loss. Academy Award winning actress Marlee Matlin, who is also deaf, worked with the designers to provide that family with cutting edge technology to compensate for their hearing losses. For an additional set of helping hands, Matlin turned to Bill Austin who runs the Starkey Hearing Foundation. Representing the Foundation, Austin appeared on the show to present both parents with hearing aids and to present the familys oldest son with a $50,000 college scholarship as a way of thanking him for all he has done to help his family.

Marlee Matlin was such a hit in November, that the shows producers asked her to be involved with the makeover of the home a family with a 15-year-old son who is hard of hearing. Again, Marlee wanted to get Bill Austin involved. Since the Starkey Hearing Foundation makes over lives through the gift of hearing, Austin wanted the shows designers to experience this life-altering experience first hand. Before they knew it, Ed Sanders and Eduardo Xol were sitting on a jet next to Austin en route to the Foundations May, 2006 So the World May Hear mission to Nicaragua, Guatemala, and El Salvador where they assisted the Starkey Foundation staff and volunteers in fitting more than 800 hearing aids on 450 children.

Thanks to Austin and the Starkey Foundation Sanders and Xol have a new perspective on what it means to touch the lives of those in need.

A few photos from the trips are attached. Hope you can use the information. Thanks!

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ABC Extreme Makeover: Home Edition designer Ed Sanders with a child who just received a hearing aid.

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ABC Extreme Makeover: Home Edition designer Eduardo Xol fits a child with a hearing aids.

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The Starkey employees, ABC team, and volunteers who went on the trips.

For more information on Starkey, visit www.starkey.com

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