Helping children to reach their full potential.

Cale Gravagna

Cheeky, playful, smart, cute and funny.

These are the five words 11-year-old Cale used to describe his dog Freddie, in his speech that took out the top prize in his age group at the 2019 Calanna Public Speaking Competition. Winning this prestigious award in his hometown of Cairns was no easy feat, with Cale taking part in four rounds of public speaking competitions, with the final speech hosted in the Cairns Regional Council Chambers.


“The topic was, ‘My Five Favourite Words’, and my speech was about my dog, Freddie. Now I am the best public speaker in my age group in Cairns,” said Cale.

Born with profound deafness in both ears, Cale received cochlear implants in 2009. With the support of listening and spoken language therapy, he is now achieving results at school above the average of his typically-hearing peers.

“Cale likes learning; he is very interested in and inquisitive about the world, with a particular interest in countries and animals,” said Cale’s mum, Donna.

“That’s what you want your kids to have, a love of learning – because it will take them anywhere.

“He can decide what he wants to do and where he wants to go after finishing school. He can gain employment in whichever field he chooses just like everyone else, because he can hear and speak. Being able to hear has opened up so many doors for him.”


Maia’s Story

At 9.10pm on 24 October 2013 our beautiful daughter Maia was born. 

The moment of elation was short-lived as we immediately noticed her left ear was missing. I frantically looked to the medical team around me for answers but received none.

Panic set in as we waited 4 days in hospital for an ENT to explain her condition, by which point we already had all the answers from Simone, who runs the Microtia and Atresia Program at Hear and Say.

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