Amherst optometrists join fight against blindness

Darrell
Darrell Cole
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Participating in World Sight day Challenge

A group of Amherst optometrists are joining forces with people on both sides of the border to participate in the World Sight Day Challenge.

FYidoctors in Amherst is hosting the World Sight Day Challenge on Oct. 10 in support of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindess. Staff members and people on both sides of the border will work blindfolded for several hours to raise money. Kicking off the campaign are: (front, from left) optician Mark Steeves, office manager Sue Coish, (back, from left) staff Jennifer Winters, Amherst and Area Chamber of Commerce president Gladys Coish, Dr. Michael Naugle, Gloria Wilson, Jodi Strickland of J&G Jewellers, Dr. Ian McCarthy and Tracey Sanderson. Missing are staff Kimberly Sarson and Bridgette O’Dell.

AMHERST – A group of Amherst optometrists are joining forces with people on both sides of the border to participate in the World Sight Day Challenge.

FYidoctors is raising funds is raising funds to donate to the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness, the co-ordinating agency leading international efforts in blindness prevention efforts throughout parts of the world with no access to quality eye care.

“In the developing world, the lack of quality eye care is the leading cause of blindness,” Dr. Ian McCarthy said Thursday. “There is a shortage of glasses and there’s a lack of sustainable health services.”

McCarthy said eye care is something many Canadians take for granted. When they need help with their eyes, an optometrist is just a phone call away. However, he said, in the Third World eye care could be hundreds or thousands of kilometres away.

He said many people are surprised to learn that $5 can be enough to provide an eye exam and glasses to someone living in an underserved community.

On Oct. 10, FYidoctors office manager Sue Coish will perform her duties blindfolded from 9 a.m. to noon. Joining her in the challenge are: Jodi Strickland from J&G Jewellers, Sackville Fire Chief Craig Bowser, Sackville Mayor Bob Berry, Dave Kelly of Payzant Home Hardware in Sackville and Amherst and Area Chamber of Commerce president Gladys Coish.

Jim Hatheway Ford has started the campaign with a financial contribution.

The challenge is the largest annual global fundraising campaign to address avoidable blindness caused by uncorrected refractive error – simply the need for an eye exam and galsses.

In addition to local fundraising efforts, FYidoctors will take part in a month-long philanthropy campaign where for every like on Facebook or new Twitter follower it receives, it will donate $1 to the World Sight Day Challenge.

 

Organizations: International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness, Area Chamber of Commerce

Geographic location: Sackville

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