Solar Ear develops affordable hearing aids that are solar powered. As if the cool factor on this product could go any further, I learned that the company only hires deaf or partially deaf persons to produce the device.
According to the World Federation of the Deaf, the rights of deaf people are often overlooked, especially in developing countries. Societal prejudices and barriers prevent deaf people from enjoying full human rights; for deaf people the major barrier is lack of recognition, acceptance and use of sign language. Majority of deaf individuals do not receive education in developing countries and approximately 80% of the world's 70 million deaf people experience the same. This is especially true for women and children. (http://wfdeaf.org/human-rights)
This is such a great example of social entrepreneurship and the potential it has to make such a signifcant difference. Hearing loss and deafness are not commonly highlighted issues within the developing world, but has such a profound effect on the lives of people. I love when innovation and social good intersect :)
For more information, check out Solar Ear's website: http://www.solarear.com.br/solar/