St. Charles Mo – Birds singing, children laughing, or listening to your favorite song, what if you couldn’t hear any of those things. This is a reality for those living in poor countries that do not have access to hearing devices or the hearing care they need. One local couple Mike and Julie Marino, the owners of Southwestern Hearing Centers, sat down with Steve Harris from KMOV to explain how they are bringing those people the gift of sound.

Its been said a picture is worth a thousand words, but what if that is all you had. What if you couldn’t hear the sounds around you? This is a reality for countless people with hearing loss. It’s a reality Mike and Julie know all about and are passionate to help change. Mikes father Al, started Southwestern Hearing Centers in 1947 and is a third generation family run company. “I’ve been fitting hearing aids for 35- 40 years and I see how it changes peoples lives, but these are people that can afford it,” Mike said.

Southwestern Hearing Centers sells Starkey hearing aids, and the owner, Bill Austin, recognized the needs of those less fortunate and created the Starkey Hearing Foundation. This unique Foundation is one of a kind and gives the gift of hearing to people in need in the U.S. and around the world. We believe hearing is a vehicle to reflect caring and to improve the lives of individuals, their families, and communities. Mike and Julie regularly join in on these trips to other countries to help fit hearing aids to those in need. They recently got back from a trip to Peru where they volunteered their time to fit and give hearing aids to people in need, for free.

Julie tells about an emotional story about the trip that no picture can do justice. “There was a little girl that just broke my heart, she was probably 4 or 5 years old, she had never heard her mothers voice. So we fit her with hearing aids and she heard her mother’s voice for the first time,” Says Julie. “It was indescribable and it changes your heart. We take our hearing for granted and this little girl had never heard her mothers voice.” Mike sums it up best, “Its fun to give and not always receive.”

If you would like to get involved, check out the Starkey Foundation Website for more information on how you can help.

About Southwestern Hearing: Southwestern Hearing is a family owned business with more than 70 years and 3 generations of experience in the hearing industry. At Southwestern we believe your quality of life directly relates to your level of hearing loss. That’s why we believe in finding a way to bring back your hearing. We are completely dedicated to ending the struggles of hearing loss, and making your world a better place to live. Our 30 convenient offices can be found in Arnold, Branson, Crestwood, Cuba, Eureka, Farmington, Festus, Hampton, Joplin, Lebanon, Manchester, Mid Rivers, Nixa, North County, O’Fallon, Rolla, South County, Springfield, St. Charles, Sullivan, Troy, Union, Warrenton, Wentzville, West County, Alton IL, Fairview Heights IL, Glen Carbon IL, Highland IL, and Waterloo IL.

Company Name:Southwestern Hearing Centers
Contact Person:Brian Marino
Phone:(855) 243-5541
Address:2151 Bluestone Drive
City:St. Charles