With the community behind him, 9-month old Noah Valentine is well on the way to being able to hear.
Noah was born profoundly deaf, and he will have an operation to fit two cochlear implants early next year.
His parents expect to have raised just over $30,000 after this weekend's auction and sold-out fundraising performance of Looking by the Geraldine Players
It is only $6000 shy of the cost of the operation.
"People have just been amazing and we're so grateful. We're well on the way to getting what we need," Noah's mum Sara Valentine said.
The Valentines received one donation of $5000 from a small charitable trust and another anonymous donation of $5000.
The Timaru Lions have promised another $5000, and the Geraldine Lions $2500.
"Those large donations have been wonderful, but the little ones have meant just as much. We've received a lot of $10 and $20 dollar donations. It means a lot that people are giving what they can. We've been blown away by people's support."
In recognition of the community effort, the Valentines are planning on filming Noah when he hears for the first time.
"So many people have been supporting us, we think it's important to share it and let other people be part of it. It's only right to let them see the story through."
Although $36,000 will cover the cost of the implant, the Valentines would ideally like to have $50,000 in case the operation doesn't go to plan, and the extra money will cover rehabilitation costs.
The Government will fund one cochlear implant, but the Valentines need to fund the second one.
On Sunday, December 15 photographer Ian Moore will be at StoneBridge taking family photos, with proceeds going to Noah's New Ears.
Booking details available through facebook.com/noahsnewears.
- The Timaru Herald