The story of Beit Micha is a story of far-reaching vision, determination and uncompromising dedication.
Beit Micha Organization was founded by Dr. Ezra Korin, E.N.T. and the head of the Audiology Institute at Sheba Hospital.
Dr. Korin became aware of the needs and the phenomenon of deaf children during his work in Israel and in France. Already in the early fifties, he came to the understanding that it is possible to teach children a communication language if the phenomenon of deafness is detected early. The early detection was the key to the success of the idea, which was still in its infancy. It should be noted that at that time The deaf and hard-of-hearing child in Israel lacked tools for social integration and hence, lacked a future and hope for building a normal and independent life in his adulthood.
The decisive year for the realization of the understandings was 1953, during a scientific conference in the Netherlands in which Dr. Korin participated, deaf children came on stage who demonstrated impressive abilities in singing and movement. When he left the conference, Dr. Korin’s heart was overcome with the decision: if they can, we can. Everything is possible, even in Israel.
In 1954, 4 children were found whose parents agreed to participate in the revolutionary method implemented by Dr. Korin. The stated goal was – full integration into society by learning the language of the bee, without sign language, and this, in the Israeli society that lacks awareness and tolerance for abnormal children. In this social and mental desert, Dr. Korin and a handful of professionals who devoted themselves to the idea of spreading the message went out. It was necessary to raise awareness of the problem and the possibility of a solution among the public, to bring in early detection of children all over the country, to change the image of the deaf and hard of hearing child, to find a place and manpower to carry out this educational idea. The war spread on many fronts.
During the 1950s and especially in the 1960s, Beit Micha established itself as a voluntary organization and gained traction and awareness in the public, thanks to a series of conscious and dedicated volunteers, who engaged in working with the children and worked hard to spread the idea and open doors – social, financial, government and public doors. At Beit Micha, pioneering work was also done with the parents, who were full partners in the effort. The ship was led by Dr. Korin, who was involved in every detail and at every stage in the development and construction of the Beit Micha organization. He acted and lectured to thousands of teachers, nurses and social workers and families in order to raise awareness of the problem of the hearing impaired child and the work methods offered at Beit Micha. For decades , this therapeutic work was done in basement apartments on Bograshov Street in Tel Aviv, which were converted into a kindergarten and therapeutic clinics.
Also, in the 1960s, teachers from the Arab sector were trained to work with hearing impaired children. The cooperation with the Arab sector continues to this day, and reached its peak in 2008 with the opening of a rehabilitation day center in Kfar Kassem where Beit Micha services are provided to the residents of the area and the surrounding villages.
In 1973, the Beit Micha building was inaugurated on the street in the Ramat Aviv neighborhood of Tel Aviv. After an anniversary, in 2023, Beit Micha embarked on a large-scale renovation and renewal project of the building and the yard, in order to continue to guarantee the children of Beit Micha the optimal conditions they need, to maximize the tools and abilities granted to them as part of the hearing treatment and rehabilitation process.
The renovation project is another step in the realization of Beit Micha’s vision – to lead the field of treating hearing impairments at an early age in Israel, not only in terms of knowledge and expertise, but also in terms of the physical infrastructure and the systems that support them.
Today it is possible to meet generations of Beit Micha graduates who are integrated into society as equals: in the army, academia, workplaces, and in every possible field and sector. The story of the Beit Micha organization combines a stubborn struggle and unprecedented courage, in the implementation of an idea that changed the lives of thousands of children and families from end to end. Through the organization’s work for nearly 70 years, Dr. Korin’s vision for the full integration of hearing impaired children into society is being fulfilled every day, in practice.