Restoring sight, transforming communities

A mother smiles as she holds her daughter who is wearing a new pair of eyeglasses
Written by Colin Zak Donate Today

For seven-year-old Misba, the Gift of Sight has meant so much more than a pair of prescription eyeglasses – it’s also been a chance to thrive at school and build connections with friends.

For her parents, who live with their daughter in a small village in West Bengal, India, it’s the unmistakable way Misba’s eyes now light up when she looks up at them.

It wasn’t always this way. Her father, Mahabul, and mother, Ruku, say worsening vision issues made it impossible for Misba to read a book without great difficulty, and their usually happy daughter often became irritated during play and at school.

Sadly, financial hardship prevented them from seeking help for their daughter. 

When an Operation Eyesight health worker knocked on the family’s door, it was a turning point in the little girl’s life. After screening Misba’s eyes, the health worker identified her with myopia – better known as nearsightedness. She was referred to the Operation Eyesight vision centre near her home and partner hospital Siliguri Greater Lions Eye Hospital, where she received an eye exam and a pair of corrective eyeglasses. 

Today, Misba is thriving in school and happily playing with her friends.

Vision loss: the world’s most unaddressed disability

Almost everyone on the planet will experience an eye health issue in their lifetime. Although 90 per cent of vision loss is treatable or preventable, today more than a billion people still don’t have access to eye care services to correct, treat or prevent vision loss.

“In communities where we work across sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, untreated vision loss often closes the door to getting an education, particularly for girls, who are disproportionately impacted by eye health problems,” explains Kashinath Bhoosnurmath, our President and CEO.

“Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we are not only providing prescription eyeglasses and life-changing surgery to those who need it – we are also transforming entire communities.”

Together, we are creating a world where quality, affordable and inclusive eye health care is available for everyone, everywhere. We are also improving people’s overall health and well-being, bringing local access to clean water and sanitation, and improving equality for women and girls, who are more likely to suffer poor vision and less likely to get treatment.  

The Gift of Sight: the gift that keeps on giving

By giving the Gift of Sight this holiday season, you can give a child like Misba the chance to learn and thrive.

You can give a parent the ability to provide for their family and care for their children.

You can give a senior the gift of independence.

Misba’s parents say they are grateful for the care she received at their local vision centre and for the health worker doing door-to-door eye health screening in their community. 

Most of all, they are relieved that they have their joyful, bright-eyed daughter back. Misba’s smile says it all!

Please give the Gift of Sight today, so you can restore sight for more children like Misba tomorrow.