- Published on 15 June 2019
The name, location, ethos, and other details of the new club will be announced at a special launch on the afternoon of June 21, the year's longest day, in the stunning grounds of Etta Abbey, Bavaria, during the "soccer camp" Simon Ollert and Sonova's Phonak brand have run since 2016. The new club will be for all young soccer talent, disabled or not. The 22-year-old professional soccer player, Ollert, is a Sonova brand ambassador and featured in one of many award-winning promotional films made by the company. “The idea to start an inclusive soccer club grew from the success of the soccer camps we were running for children with hearing loss," Ollert points out. His soccer camps last several days and teach children ball control and footballing skills with the help of a pro training team, training equipment provided by PUMA, and sportswear by STS Sport and Travel Service, a local company. Children at the camp have so far come from Germany, Austria, Switerland and Russia.
This June's launch, during a charity event for the non-profit Sonova-founded Hear the World Foundation at , will also feature appearances by other Sonova brand ambassadors who have overcome hearing loss to triumph in their fields: famous Chinese dancer Tianjiao (Jiaojiao) Zhang, and circus aerialist Jason Brügger will perform choreographed modern dance and acrobatics routines respectively, while world beard champion and hearing aid wearer Fritz Sendlhofer will do some Austrian regional cooking from his homeland to feed the guests.
“We are delighted to again lend our support to Simon Ollert and give talented young soccer players with hearing loss the chance to realize their full potential. Our soccer camp will contribute to developing the club’s young talents. This is in line with the Sonova Group’s vision to enable everyone to live a life without limitations supported by our hearing solutions”, says Arnd Kaldowski, CEO of Sonova.
According to the figures from the 2018 EuroTrak Germany study by the European Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association, 12.2 percent of people in Germany suffer from hearing loss. The proportion of children up to the age of 14 with hearing loss is about two percent.