The Bayat Foundation and Starkey Hearing Foundation Mission to the Dominican Republic

Bringing Health, Healing and Hope to the neediest of our fellow Afghans, were the three powerful and heartfelt reasons which inspired my family and I to establish The Bayat Foundation in 2006. Last month, from April 18th to April 20th, The Bayat Foundation, in partnership with with our friends at The Starkey Hearing Foundation (, was privileged to join a three day medical mission which brought Hope, Healing—and the gift of Hearing—to the people of the Dominican Republic.

In Afghanistan, both of our organizations have worked together, side by side, on two hearing care missions which have restored the hearing of 2,479 Afghans. I was determined that our contribution to this newest hearing care mission would demonstrate just how much we appreciated their work in Afghanistan—and our support of Starkey’s commitment to help people in need everywhere. So, my daughter Leah and I joined the group of Bayat Foundation volunteers who assisted the Starkey Hearing Foundation’s team of seasoned, strong and exceptional hearing health specialists.

Our hearing care mission took place in Santo Domingo and Santiago de los Caballeros, the two largest cities in the Dominican Republic. Our combined Bayat-Starkey hearing care team worked with unyielding determination to help every person who came to the mobile hearing care stations, seeking a cure for their deafness or hearing loss.

Every patient we worked with represented the beautiful and diverse history of the Dominican Republic, and embodied a range of ages—from one year to 115 (!) years old. Approximately 29% of the people we assisted had suffered hearing loss at birth, while over one-third of our patients didn’t know the reasons for their hearing loss.

Our combined Bayat-Starkey hearing care team was able to provide the gift of hearing to 1,200 people living in Santo Domingo and Santiago de los Caballeros. Leah and I felt happy—and humbled—that our efforts had helped so many people hear—many, for the first time in their lives.

Yet, despite the progress we were able to make, everyone involved with the hearing care mission realized that there are millions of people around the world who need the kind of exceptional hearing medical care that the Starkey Hearing Foundation provides—and the Bayat Foundation is honored to support. More than 360 million people throughout the world are affected by deafness or hearing loss. And this sad, staggering and sobering statistic includes thousands of our fellow Afghans.

In late 2016, The Bayat Foundation and the Starkey Hearing Foundation will join together and launch our third annual Afghanistan Hearing Care Mission. Last year, our Afghanistan Hearing Care Mission restored the hearing of 1,544 children and adults living in Kabul, Herat and Balkh Provinces. This year, The Bayat Foundation and the Starkey Hearing Foundation, working together, are focused on one goal: we are determined to provide Hearing—and Hope for a better life—to every person who seeks our assistance, here in Afghanistan, and around the world.

Until next time,


Dr. Ehsanollah Bayat

Entrepreneur and Philanthropist

Founder and CEO, Afghan Wireless Communication Company (AWCC)Founder and CEO, Ariana Television and Radio (ATN)

Founder, Bayat Foundation


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