They can hear you now


By Melanie Speicher


SIDNEY — The opportunity to help others in need is something Vanessa Lee has focused on with her career as an audiologist.

In March, she was able to fit 200 people in Mexico with hearing aids thanks to MrBeast, who is also known as Jimmy Donaldson, is a philanthropic mentor who spent $3 million to provide hearing aids to 1,000 people around the world. He is an American YouTuber on YouTube and has millions of followers.

Lee, of Wapakoneta, has offices in both Sidney — Sidney Audiology — and Wapakoneta — Auglaize Audiology — and volunteers with Hearing the Call. She was on a mission with them in Mexico when they learned Mr. Beast wanted to work with Hearing the Call to get hearing aids to those in need.

“MrBeast did a vision program,” said Lee. “After its success, he decided to do an audiology program too.”

Lee said MrBeast contacted Dr. Cliff Olson, one of the nation’s leading audiologists, about getting hearing aids to those in need.

“He (Olson) told him that he didn’t have the ability to do that, but he know he does. He told him to contact Hearing the Call,” said Lee.

So it was back to Mexico and the team from Hearing the Call.

“We were in Mexico in February when we were contacted,” said Lee “We weeks after that we went back in Mexico to help MrBeast to fit 1,000 hearing aids in the next month.”

Lee said their youngest patient was 5 or 6 years old and the oldest was in their 80s.

“We fit 200 hearing aids in two days,” said Lee. “It was incredible.”

There was a team of 10 audiologists who went to Mexico. They were assisted by volunteers who provided support during the two days.

“When we go into an area to fit hearing aids, we have partners on the ground to support the individuals until we come back for check ups,” said Lee. “Some people know they have hearing loss and others don’t. They come to us for testing and fitting of the hearing aids.

“We use our best practices philosophy to fit the hearing aids appropriately for their needs.”

Each person they saw was tested for hearing loss.

“That usually takes about 20 minutes for an adult,” she said. “They are screened before that and it takes about 10 minutes. Then they have to wait for 20 minutes (for results to be determined). Then we make ear molds which takes between 15-20 minutes. hen we fit them, which takes about 15 minutes.”

For a child, she said, it takes a little bit longer as the child is responding to play for them to determine the hearing loss. It usually takes 30-40 minutes for the testing and there are two professionals involved. One controls the audiometer and the other watches the child’t responses to what they are hearing. The rest of the procedure is the same as for the adult.

“MrBeast’s crew was filming interviews while we were working,” said Lee. “It was very interesting to watch the individuals. He also gave two laptops away also. One went to a girl in university who had to stay late at college to use their laptop because she didn’t have one. He also gave a motorized scooter to another person who had to walk everywhere”

Lee said she wasn’t in the final video MrBeast released on YouTube, but several of the people she fitted for hearing aids were.

In addition to paying for the hearing aids, MrBeast also paid for all the travel expenses and lodging for the audiologists who made the trip to Mexico.

Lee has been involved with Hearing the Call for three years. She has also started a local chapter 1 1/2 years ago.

“We help people in developing countries and we decided we needed to be taking care of our neighbors in the communities where it is needed,” said Lee. “We have fit one person in the Sidney area through the program. We have another on our schedule to be fitted.”

In addition to traveling to Mexico, other volunteers with Hearing the Call went to Brazil, South Africa, Malawi, Guatemala and Indonesia, along with locations in the United States to fit the 1,000 hearing aids.

As a surprise to some of the hearing aid recipients, MrBeast also gave $10,000 to numerous families, a jet ski to another one, let a child go on a toy shopping spree, sent a family to a NBA game and a fan to a Taylor Swift concert.

To see MrBeast’s video about the hearing aid mission, visit

Anyone wishing to make donations to the Hearing the Call program, both locally and internationally, can do so by visiting Donations to serve Shelby/Auglaize counties can be made by donating to The Hearing Hope Project under the “local” tab or by putting that in the comments of your donation.

For more information about the organization’s humanitarian work can contact Lee at [email protected].

Sidney Audiology is located at 671 N. Vandemark Road, Sidney; phone 937-638-0023. The email is [email protected]. Their website is You can also follow them on Facebook at Auglaize and Sidney Audiology.

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