Providing vision screenings for students in Vietnam. Photo: c. HKI/USAID
“I did not know that both of my kids were suffering from vision problems,” said Ms. Ngo Thi Hoa, a school health worker at the small primary school in Vietnam that her children attend. Once she noticed that the vision section of the general physical forms provided by her children’s school was left blank, she began to investigate further.
A mother living in Corona, Queens, Rosa has three sons, all of whom wear glasses. With a single pair of glasses easily costing hundreds of dollars, Rosa struggled to provide her children with the vision care that they need — annual eye exams, prescription lenses, and new frames if glasses get lost or broken.
This post was written by ChildSight® New York Program Manager Tonya Daniels.
Today is World Sight Day, a global day of awareness about the importance of eye health. It also serves as a great reminder to have your child’s eyes checked.
One NYC student on the path to clear vision at a recent ChildSight® screening. Photo: c. HKI
Did you know that up to 80% of what your child learns is through their eyes? One of the most common – and preventable – obstacles to academic success is unclear vision. The fact is if your child can’t see the writing on the board or the text in a book, it can mean the difference between doing well in school this year and failing.
It’s a familiar scene: a student suddenly starts to fall behind or lose interest in subjects they once loved. They miss homework assignments, seem distracted and act up in class. Maybe they no longer want to play sports after school with their friends. Parents and teachers are left mystified.
Pencils are sharpened, notebooks are at the ready and the excitement of a new school year, full of new beginnings and possibilities, is in the air for students all around the United States. But many are starting the school year off at a disadvantage. Some have to squint to read the blackboard or borrow notes from their friends; others lose their place while reading their text books.
So, we have finished our first week in the office. We are official public health practitioners and it feels great.
Blog post by HKI-Vietnam Interns, Casey McCormick and Michael Wilson
After a long, but uneventful set of flights, Casey and I finally arrived in the bustling city of Hanoi just shy of 30 hours after leaving the North Carolina/Virginia area. We were very fortunate to find a very hospitable taxi driver who, aside from a persistent use of his high beams in order to make oncoming traffic aware of his presence, was extremely helpful in helping us to find the apartment Linh, from HKI Viet Nam, had arranged for us in the Bah Dinh district.
And so the countdown enters into single digits. In just two days, Michael and I begin our journey to Hanoi, Vietnam. I suppose before we continue anymore with the details of our summer, we should introduce ourselves. My name is Casey McCormick and my trusty sidekick and fellow intern is Michael Wilson. We are both master’s of public health students at the school in the southern slice of heaven, otherwise known as the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Michael and I have focused our studies within the department of Health Behavior with a specific concentration in global health. We are both beyond thrilled by the opportunity Helen Keller International has afforded us to work with HKI this summer as interns in their Hanoi office.
The eighth graders at MS 80 in the Bronx line up, single file, in front of an eye chart on the stage of their crowded auditorium. Some of them read the letters on the chart aloud with clarity and certainty. Others have trouble reading even the top few lines. Some students are already wearing glasses, while others have spent months and even years squinting to read letters on signs or on the chalkboard in class.
This post originally appeared on TOMS’ Eyewear blog. Helen Keller International is partnering with TOMS to provide prescription eyeglasses to students in need through our ChildSight® program.
Hector, 12, is an eager sixth-grader here in Los Angeles, with a knack for math. When he grows up, he hopes to be a veterinarian or play soccer, his favorite sport, professionally.
Not too long ago, Hector was having trouble seeing the blackboard, and was struggling in classes although he had the skills to succeed. Hector knew he needed glasses, but had broken his last pair and wasn’t able to replace them because of his family’s financial constraints. When he could, Hector would borrow his older sister’s glasses, and although that didn’t correct his vision, he thought a little bit of help was better than nothing.
This post originally appeared on TOMS’ blog. Helen Keller International is partnering with TOMS to provide prescription eyeglasses to students in need through our ChildSight® program.
As TOMS sight giving continues in Nepal, Tibet and Cambodia, we are very happy to share that TOMS Eyewear purchases are now helping restore sight to children in the United States as well!
TOMS is excited to partner with Helen Keller International’s (HKI) ChildSight® program to help provide prescription glasses to children living in impoverished U.S. communities. Since 1994, ChildSight® has provided vision screening and prescription eyeglasses to at-risk students living in urban and rural communities in cities like New York, Los Angeles, Cleveland and the Navajo Nation. TOMS Eyewear is proud to join them in helping provide new glasses to children.