Chili Fest supports good cause

Published 7:22 pm Saturday, April 7, 2012

For the fifth year, the SERTOMA Club is bringing a feast of chili and other delicious food to Suffolk.

The event is Saturday, and the cause is a good one. The SERTOMA (SERvice TO MAnkind) Club’s mission is to help young people with hearing and speech impairments by helping them afford hearing aids, providing funding for the public schools, the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters and other organizations to provide services, and other such support.

For children who have hearing and speech problems, not being able to access a hearing aid or other correction or treatment can have lifelong effects. According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, early hearing loss causes speech and language delays, causes learning problems, can lead to social isolation and poor self-esteem and may even affect vocational choices later in life.

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Children with severe hearing loss usually achieve skills no higher than third- or fourth-grade level, according to the association.

Also according to the association, the earlier hearing loss occurs, the more serious the effects. But the earlier the problem is identified and intervention is begun, the less serious the ultimate impact.

That’s why it’s so important to support the SERTOMA Club. But the good cause isn’t the only reason to attend. There also will be all-you-can-eat chili and barbecue, beverages, entertainment by More Cowbell, children’s activities and more.

Tickets are $20 for the April 14 event, which will be held from 2 to 5:30 p.m. at Bennett’s Creek Park. They can be purchased at the gate or in advance at Walgreens on Bridge Road, Xenith Bank, Arthur’s General Store in Driver or Bon Vivant in Governor’s Pointe.