Stories about Children
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A Child that had been exposed to cmv and then was deafened


A Cochlear Implant for Zayd’s Unilateral Hearing Loss

Before his second birthday, Zayd’s mother, Saba Ashfaq of West Virginia, realized that her son was not responding to her voice as he had in the past. Knowing that he experienced a head injury at 19 months, she knew there was the potential for hearing loss. It took over a year to confirm that her son now had profound deafness in his right ear. Thus began an eight month journey to the surgery and the challenge of obtaining Medicaid coverage for Zayd’s unilateral hearing loss.

Read Zayd's complete story here



Jake Noyd knows his cochlear implants give him super power—the power to hear! The six-year-old kindergartner is “on fire” thanks to the support of his family and an intensive early education program. Identified with a profound hearing loss at birth, Jake's family wasted no time in pursuing cochlear implants and enrolling in a spoken language education program.

Jake Noyd's Portrait


Early Intervention Success Story

Early identification and intervention for kids with hearing loss can make a huge impact in helping a child reach their full speech, language and social development potential. That is why we were excited to see what happens when the early intervention process is carried out the way it should be as it did with Neil Maes, an eleven year old boy with cochlear implants who competed in the Scripps National Bee in May 2016. Please view the portrait to read about the Maes family’s hearing journey and the importance of early intervention. Their story is a wonderful example of how early intervention and detection leads to success.

Maes Family Portrait



Neil Maes, featured above in our early intervention success story, keeps amazing us with his spelling skills.  After competing in the Scripps National Spelling Bee for the second time, Neil spoke to us about what it takes to reach the national level and his goal to return one more time.  

Neil Maes Interview

The mission of the American Cochlear Implant (ACI) Alliance is to advance access to the gift of hearing provided by cochlear implantation through research, advocacy and awareness.