Hearing loss can be a devastating and debilitating disorder that many people will experience, either short-term or long-term. The thought of life without a certain form of expressive language made it especially hard to swallow for one twelve-year-old Australian girl.
According to the Australian newspaper the Maitland Mercury, Jorja Hope found out earlier this year that she suffers from a condition that causes progressive inner-ear hearing loss and will eventually be completely deaf. Her first thought when she heard the news?
“I won’t be able to hear Taylor Swift sing,” Hope recalled.
Swift has a history of making many of her devoted fans’ dreams come true. Last year, she started her very own ‘Swiftmas’ program where she stalked social media pages of some of her biggest followers and found out just what they wanted for Christmas and sent it directly to them with personalized letters. She’s even reportedly cut a check for almost $2,000 ($1,989, to be exact, in honor of her latest album) to a fan struggling with student loans.
Hearing loss affects 48 million people in the United States alone; in Australia, an estimated one out of every six people (about 3.55 million) have some form of this condition. In an effort to cheer Hope’s spirits and make one of the young girl’s dreams come true, her twin sister Chloe started the social media campaign, #HelpJorjaMeetTaylorSwiftSydney.
The power of such mediums came through as the local Sydney radio station, Nova 96.9, eventually picked up the story. The station arranged a meet-and-greet between the girl and her idol on Saturday, Nov. 28, while Swift was Down Under for part of her ongoing 1989 tour.
“She was very, very amazing and very pretty,” Hope said. “I didn’t expect her to be as tall as she was. It was very, very fun, we danced all night.”
Not only did both the sisters get to meet the international pop star, they also got prime tickets to the concert later that night at ANZ Stadium with 76,000 other excited fans.
“Taylor Swift, she is my idol,” Hope said. “She does get a lot of people who say she’s bad, but she keeps on going.”