Hundreds of microtia and atresia families turned out for this summer’s Ear Community Picnics sponsored by Cochlear in six cities: Sacramento, El Paso, Nashville, Cincinnati, Charleston, SC and Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.


Since the first picnic was held in Denver in 2011, Cochlear has partnered with Ear Community, a non-profit organization, to host up to seven picnics each year as part of our commitment to helping people with hearing loss live a life without limitations. To date, there have been nearly 60 events, bringing thousands of people together from all over the world.

Cochlear staff and volunteers come out in full force to support the picnics, provide information, and meet recipients and families touched by microtia and atresia.

Ear Community

“Cochlear has been a long-standing partner of the Ear Community Organization and a strong advocate for people with microtia and atresia,” said Melissa Tumblin, Founder and Executive Director of Ear Community. “At each picnic, Cochlear’s staff and volunteers truly help change lives for the better and, through their outreach, they are able to make a difference in someone’s life who has hearing loss.”


Dorota Simpson, a Cochlear Engagement Manager in Canada, said, “We had an amazing time supporting the Hamilton, Ontario Ear Community Picnic. We helped many families and their children by demonstrating the new Baha®, SoundArc and going over the wireless accessories like the Mini Mic 2+ and the easy to use Baha® Smart app. We look forward to continuing to support families in any way we can.”

Attendees benefitted from meeting other people face-to-face. It can be a huge relief for families to realize that they are not alone.

Ear Community

 “Scott and I enjoyed meeting all the families and hearing their stories. It was amazing seeing how things had changed with treating microtia.” ~ Picnic attendees Scott and Christy G.

Many parents attend seeking information for their children, but the picnics are valuable for adults living with microtia and atresia, too. Will S. hadn’t met anyone like him for decades. He was able to share his experience as an adult growing up and living with microtia and atresia with many families, and he was also able to learn about the latest hearing devices, like the Baha® 5 system and newly launched Baha SoundArc.

“This was a great event! I learned so much and hopefully was able to give good advice based on my experiences. I can’t wait to attend another!” ~ Picnic attendee, Will S.

Ear community

From the range of options available for people of all ages and stages of hearing loss (Softband, SoundArc and the Baha® 5  sound processors) to the leading True Wireless™ technology and Made for iPhone hearing devices, everyone can now connect and communicate like never before. Cochlear is also committed to providing the best customer service experience every step of the way.

“We are so thankful for Cochlear’s support. They have been so helpful to us on our hearing journey, especially with respect to insurance. I first contacted them when my son was six weeks old to get his Softband and our audiologist said that she never saw the insurance approval and delivery go so fast.” ~ Picnic attendee, Courtney K.

Ear community


For more information on Cochlear’s Baha System for children, including Softband and SoundArc, click here.

To find more information about your child’s hearing loss and download a free resource guide to help you through the process, click here.

Learn more about Ear Community.



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Cochlear Guest Writer
Cochlear Americas showcases the stories of real people celebrating life's real moments. This blog was written by a guest writer for Cochlear Americas.