Jonathan (Jonny) Kelly is father to Conor, a four-year-old cochlear implant user supported by the team at The Hearing House.
He kicked off our 2021 campaign in July by going dry for the month, and tells us why he's supporting Loud Shirt Day this year:
Conor was three years old when he was diagnosed as being profoundly deaf after a bout of meningitis.
At a time when our world seemed to be falling apart, we were visited in the hospital by Robyn and Victoria from The Hearing House and for the first time in weeks there was hope.
I will be eternally grateful to The Hearing House for everything they did and continue to do in helping Conor's development.
For me, I just wanted to do something to say thank you to The Hearing House to show Conor how proud I am of his strength.
It is my way of trying repay somehow everything people have done to give Conor the gift of hearing again.
It was a very easy thing to do for a great cause. Everyone that I managed to thank in person reiterated that sentiment regarding how worthy a cause it is.
Conor is now four and a half and, as you can see in the video, able to hear and communicate with the aid of his cochlear implants.
Jonny isn't done either and has some plans in place to try raise more money between now and Loud Shirt Day.... watch this space!
Loud Shirt Day
Wear your brightest outfit this October and raise vital funds to help children and adults with profound hearing who access sound with cochlear implants.
Loud Shirt Day 2021 is on Friday 29 October but you can get LOUD with us in any way and on any day you like.
It is the national fundraising campaign for The Hearing House and the Southern Cochlear Implant Programme (SCIP) – the only two charities in New Zealand dedicated to supporting children and adults with cochlear implants as they learn to listen and communicate. Together, these two organisations support thousands of Kiwis in every region of New Zealand who access sound with cochlear implants.
Through their passionate and dedicated teams of audiologists, specialised therapists, and support staff they deliver a range of services and programmes to assist babies, children and adults with cochlear implants as they learn to hear and communicate.
Money raised through Loud Shirt Day will help The Hearing House and SCIP ensure everyone in New Zealand has access to lifetime cochlear implant support.
So how can you support Loud Shirt Day?
It can be as simple as making a donation. Individuals can bring a gold coin to take part in a loud dress-up day at school, businesses might hold a themed lunch, host a fashion show at daycare, or get the whole town/community immersed in fundraising.
Loud Shirt Day is also a charity partner of the ASB Auckland Marathon, so runners can even don their brightest activewear and run the city for the cause.
Visit loudshirtday.org.nz to learn more and set up your fundraising page today.