Emotional Moment Young Deaf Boy Sobs As He Hears His Dads Voice For First Time In Weeks
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This is the adorable moment a deaf boy broke down when he heard his dad's voice for the first time in weeks, after the local community rallied around to foot the repair bill for his hearing aid.
When nine-year-old Luiz Gustavo da Silva's surgical hearing implant stopped working in March, he was left facing weeks of uncertainty as his family couldn't afford the bill of £1,630 ($2,260).
The young boy was devastated by the sudden silence and cried repeatedly, sorely missing conversations, music and interacting at school.
Little Luiz Gustavo's situation touched the hearts of hundreds of residents in his home town of Bueno Brandão in south east Brazil, which has a population of around 11,000.
Hundreds rallied to the youngster's cause when it was decided that a raffle would be held with an ox, worth around £220 ($300), was donated as the top prize.
Raffle tickets were sold for £2.20 ($3.00) each and within 15 days the repair cost was raised, with many residents having never met the boy.
To show their appreciation, the youngster's dad, Juliano, 32, recorded the moment on March 19 when he refitted the implement to his anxious son's left ear and switched it on.
Juliano, an office administrator, said: "For the past six years Luiz Gustavo has been living a normal life and has been working with speech therapists to improve his communication.
"Then the hearing aid suddenly stopped working. We sent it to the manufacturer's technical department, but the Unified Health System (SUS - Brazil's public health service) doesn't pay for maintenance and the warranty expired three years ago.
"So, we were presented with a repair bill we couldn't afford. Luiz Gustavo was without the equipment for over two weeks. But for him it felt like an eternity."
He added: "I adjusted it and the instant Luiz Gustavo heard my voice was priceless.
"It still brings tears to my eyes when I look back on how he jumped with surprised joy and gave the thumbs up. That moment reminds me just how isolated he is when he cannot hear."
Luiz Gustavo was born deaf, but doctors failed for over a year and a half to correctly diagnose the problem.
At the age of three, he was fitted with a life-transforming cochlear implant.
Amazingly, a tiny electrical charge is sent to the fibres of the auditory nerve to give sound sensations which are recognised by the brain.
Luiz Gustavo's mum, Athais, 29, said: "The response was amazing. We were shocked by how many people supported our son and gave so generously."
The distressed little guy refused to go to school and spent nearly every day 'sobbing his heart out' and getting increasingly frustrated over his predicament.
"On the day we went to collect the repair, I decided to record a video to show everyone, who had bought a raffle ticket, the result of their extraordinary kindness," said the grateful dad.
Footage shows the adorable moment Luiz Gustavo bursts into tears as Juliano tells him: "There is no need to cry," but becomes emotional himself, saying: "You can hear, you can hear".
After hugging the family friend, who volunteered to collect the device from the manufacturers, the delighted boy waves to the camera and between sobs says: "Thank you everyone."
The video was posted by Juliano to give something back to the people who raised cash. He said: "We were stunned by the commotion the video created.
"Within a day of it being posted, we received a staggering eight million views, hundreds of thousands of shares and calls from TV and radio to tell our story.
"People were touched by Luiz Gustavo's response which was heartfelt. He couldn't stop crying with happiness and his reaction reduced me to tears.
"We're eternally indebted to everyone who helped make this difference to his life."
Now the family is battling to raise funds to pay for bilateral surgery to deliver hearing to the child's right ear.
The cost for the second device is over £15,000. The family has launched a fund-raising page and is hoping for help once again.
Donate to Luiz Gustavo's hearing aid fund here.