Phonak, Stäfa, Switzerland, has joined forces with Macy’s to raise awareness about the importance of hearing and the consequences of hearing loss, says a statement from the company.

The Hear the World initiative by Phonak aims to bring the message of hearing loss awareness—a growing issue that affects some 31 million Americans—to cities across the United States via the Hear the World Tour, a traveling photography exhibit that will be showcased in select Macy’s stores.

At each event, Macy’s shoppers will have the opportunity to receive a free hearing screening, and to view a photography exhibit featuring the artwork of rock star and official Hear the World photographer, Bryan Adams. Adams has photographed several notable musicians and celebrities including Mick Jagger, Billy Idol, Lenny Kravitz, Elle Macpherson, John Legend, and Michael Bublé. Each image features the celebrity ambassador with a hand behind their ear in a conscious pose of hearing.

Local hearing care professionals will also be on hand at the event to answer questions and provide educational materials about hearing loss prevention and treatment.

While often undetected or neglected, hearing loss can become a social and emotional barrier for the individuals suffering from it, or the families of those it affects. According to the Better Hearing Institute, more than 6 million Americans affected are between the ages of 18 to 44.

In January 2010, the Hear the World Tour is scheduled to visit Macy’s stores in New York City, Miami, and Philadelphia. To learn more about Hear the World and for the latest event information, become a fan on Facebook and follow the Hear the World Twitter channel.

[Source: Phonak]