Change is in Sight
Open Your Eyes to a Better Future
Have you been for a routine eye check lately? If you have, that’s great! Did you get a new pair of glasses or try your hand at putting in contacts? Maybe you found out you still have 20/20 vision – if so, congratulations! Our eye health is so important because it really does affect everything we do, so routine eye exams from an optometrist can help us keep our vision sharp and vastly improve our lives in the process.
Eye exams can help find ways to correct our vision and detect visual impairments like cataracts, glaucoma, and macular degeneration but they can also spot other serious health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer. Something as simple as an eye exam can do so much for our overall heath and quality of life, and all it takes is a quick trip to your local opticians! The NHS recommends getting your eyes tested every 2 years to make sure your eyes are healthy and your vision is clear, and you can always book an appointment anytime you want if you’re concerned about your vision.
But image if you couldn’t? Imagine if you woke up tomorrow with blurry vision, no glasses and no way of contacting an optometrist to get it checked out. You would have to carry on with your day and hope that your vision cleared. Suddenly, simple things like reading a book, preparing lunch or walking the dog have become difficult. Words are cloudy on the pages, you can’t find what you want from the cupboard and you tripped several times as you were out walking in your own neighbourhood.
Worldwide, there are at least 2.2 billion people who don’t have to imagine this, they’re living it. They suffer from visual impairments or blindness and sadly, more than 1 billion of these impairments were entirely preventable or are still currently going untreated. The World Health Organization has stated that 90% of these visually impaired people are living in the developing world - and they need our help.
Open Your Eyes
Our Open Your Eyes appeal is making eye care available to poor, rural communities throughout Asia and Africa, providing medicine, treatment and glasses to those who need them. We’re shining a light in the dark for thousands of people by holding mobile eye clinics in hard to reach communities, diagnosing optical ailments and restoring the sight of thousands of people.
Mobile eye clinics are run by experienced optometrists who can carefully check over each patient and give them the care they need to avoid sight loss. From routine check-ups to simple eye operations, we’re working to assure that everyone can see the bright futures ahead of them.
A donation of £60 can provide a life-changing eye treatment for someone who is living with vision loss. Blind and visually impaired people are too often forced into isolation when they go without treatment because they are unable to work or have independent livelihoods. Children with untreated sight problems often fall behind in school because they can’t see the board or properly focus on their work. Everyday tasks become goliath challenges when a person struggles to see, but you can help. By improving a person’s vision, you’ll be improving the quality of their lives and giving them a clear path out of poverty.
Liakot is one of the many people our Open Your Eyes’ clinics have helped in Bangladesh and thanks to a successful cataract surgery, he has now regained his sight!
Living in a poor neighbourhood in the Kishoreganj district of Bangladesh, 70-year-old Liakot was suffering greatly from vision impairments and was unable to work because of it. His wife had passed away a few years before his vision deteriorated, so when he could no longer work to put food on the table, Liakot’s two sons began selling vegetables in a nearby town and would share the money with him. Liakot’s eldest daughter looks after him at home, while his youngest daughter still attends school.
“I can’t do any work due to my low eye sight. My Two sons give me a small amount of money but I can hardly manage my family as well as continuing the education my younger daughter. We can hardly manage only two meals per day.” Liakot said.
“It has been a long time since I have been feeling my eyesight’s problems, but it was not possible for me to check my eyes by a doctor because I didn’t have the money. I felt that my eye situation was deteriorating day by day.”
Liakot and his family struggled to survive on the money his son’s made; he feared his family’s situation would never improve. When he was approached by our partner’s and told that he was eligible for a free eye exam at our mobile eye clinic, he was both shocked and filled with hope.
After arriving at the mobile eye clinic, Liakot was seen by an optometrist who diagnosed him with cataracts. He was then sent to the Kishoreganj Eye Hospital for surgery and had the support of staff from the mobile eye clinic throughout his whole procedure. They even made sure he returned home safely once it was complete.
Liakot can now see again, and once more has the opportunity to help provide for his family and give them a good life. Liakot was so pleased with the aid he received thanks to our Open Your Eyes appeal, he told us:
“I’m very happy to get back my eye sight again. I can see well. I would like to thank all friends at Penny Appeal for their generous support. I also like to thank PEP for identifying me and giving me this wonderful opportunity.”
See the Difference with Penny Appeal
While we gave Liakot his sight back, we were also able to provide comprehensive eye care services to hundreds of people in the Kishoreganj district through the same mobile eye clinic. 193 people were provided with medicine, 152 people were prescribed and given glasses, 44 people received cataract surgeries and others were treated with various optical operations. All this sight restoring care was made possible because of our amazing donors, and with your help we can keep running clinics like this one throughout Asia and Africa.
October is Blindness Awareness Month and the October 8th is World Sight Day, so we’re doing our best to raise awareness about blindness and visual impairment around the world. With our Open Your Eyes appeal you can do your part to help improve people’s eye heath and give them a whole new outlook on life – quite literally!
A monthly donation of £25 could provide 5 eye treatments for people like Liakot and make a visible difference in their lives. Help us treat and prevent blindness by becoming a donor today!
WEDNESDAY 1 JAN 2020