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Project information

Tanzania - mobile hearing centre

Tanzania is one of Africa's poorest nations & suffers high rates of meningitis and measles - significant causes of deafness amongst children. We will provide a mobile earcare clinic, specialist testing facilities, indepth medical training & information to reduce the impact of deafness & ear disease.

May 2009 - June 2014

Charity information: Sound Seekers

Sound Seekers logo
  • Need


    Whilst there are two ENT departments in the country (Dar es Salaam and Moshi), there is no public system in place to screen for hearing loss or provide hearing aids & equipment is sorely outdated and in need of replacing. This reflects the fact that there is currently no strategic plan for support of the hearing impaired within the Ministry of Health – something the MOH is now determined to address, in partnership with Sound Seekers.


    MOH and Sound Seekers agree that an audiology outreach service to screen and treat children with infective ear disease, educate parents, and refer more serious cases for medical or surgical treatment in either Moshi or Dar es Salaam would provide the best solution to the lack of a national audiology service. We will provide specialist equipment and set up a hearing aid laboratory/ test room at Muhimbili Hospital as well as an ongoing supply of hearing aids and batteries.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    By the end of year three the team will be fully trained and operational.


    » 3 nurses, a surgeon and an audiometrist will have been trained in audiology, 2 technicians in equipment maintenance, & team leader in sustainability.

    What success will look like

    Success will be the team demonstrating their knowledge and skills on a practical level by delivering testing, treatment & support to patients.

    Aim 2

    After 3 years 30,000 patients will have been screened, tested and treated by the outreach team.


    » The team will develop a programme of visits to outlying clinics, health centres and public buildings & publicise their work to local communities.
    » The team will put their training to use by testing on board the mobile clinic as well as making referalls to the facilities at Muhambili.
    » The team will work with partner organisations and local schools to identify those most in need of testing and treatment.

    What success will look like

    Success will be having a record of all patients seen, their diagnosis and the follow up given, including dispension of hearing aids where appropriate.

    Aim 3

    Referrals to a school for the deaf will ensure that children are not excluded from education.


    » Our outreach team will be taught to identify children who could benefit from specialist schooling.
    » The team will develop strong links with local schools for the deaf and the education authorities.

    What success will look like

    Success will be more deaf children having access to educational opportunities.

    Aim 4

    The Tanzanian Ministry of Health will make deafness a priority and develop a strategy.


    » We will work in partnership witht the MOH to develop and support the project.
    » After five years the MOH will have to demonstrate their commitment to the long term success of the project before we hand over ownership.

    What success will look like

    Success will be a long term commitment fro the MOH as well as a revised strategy, resulting in a nationwide ear care service that is self-contained, versatile and sustainable.

  • Impact


    Deaf and hard of hearing children and adults in Tanzania will be identified, treated and supported. Parents will be educated about how to look after their childrens ears and hearing, and how to identify any problems. Children with deafness or hearing loss will have increased life opportunities thanks to better access to education as well as raised awareness levels amongst local communities and general society about the causes of deafness and what it means to be deaf.


    There are always difficulties when managing a project remotely from another part of the world. The Rotary Club of Dar es Salaam headed by Mr Iqbal Nagri has agreed to help to co-ordinate the project, and will convene a steering group consisting of Muhimbili Hospital, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education, Tanzania Association of the Deaf (CHAVITA) and the Rotary Club of Dar es Salaam. We have also scheduled regular visits as well as Skype meetings to ensure things stay on track.


    Donors will receive an annual project report as well as regular informal updates via newsletters, photographs and videos. Donors will have the opportunity to attend our AGM and hear about our work directly as well as input into the running of the organisation.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £205,710

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £47,000 Mobile clinic Purchase of a specially designed and equipped mobile clinic vehicle, based on a Landrover defender.
      £14,046 Equipment Full suite of diagnostic and treatment audiology equipment including audiometers & otoscopes.
      £36,220 Facilities Building of ear mould laboratory and sound proof testing room at Muhambili hospital.
      £43,500 Training & salaries Full training for whole team plus top up allowances on top of their MOH salaries.
      £28,330 Project management Both from Head Office and locally
      £36,614 Miscellaneous Shipping of vehicle and equipment, insurance, fuel & servicing, local admin, travel & accomodation.

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Jersey Overseas Aid £64,746 Guaranteed
    Guernsey Overseas Aid £36,222 Guaranteed
    Rotary Club of Dar Es Salaam £4,921 Guaranteed
    Miscellaneous trusts, foundations, companies & individuals £63,819 Guaranteed
  • Background


    Throughout Tanzania with a base in Dar Es Salaam.


    With a population of 37 million, Tanzania is one of Africa’s poorest nations in terms of human development – 164th out of 177. The country suffers high rates of meningitis and measles – two significant causes of deafness amongst children. Poverty is much more severe in rural areas constituting about 87% compared to 13% in urban areas. The incidence of deafness and hearing impairment is also particularly high in the large rural areas, which have poorer access to primary healthcare.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Sound Seekers has been operating for over 50 years, carrying out work to support the deaf and hard of hearing across the developing world. We have a specialist trustee board comprising medical and educational experts who input a great deal into the running of our organisation and projects.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Gary Williams

    Chief Executive in charge of all oversease project management.

    Judith Roberts

    Trustee with an active interest in Tanzania and strong links to a project at Bugaruni school for the deaf.

    Hamid Daya

    Trustee, a professional audiologist of Tanzanian heritage.


provide a hearing aid for a deaf child in Tanzania