38-year-old Evelyn lives in Muziyo village, about 35 kilometers south of Zambia’s Sinazongwe District. What started as itching and irritation of the eyelids turned into severe, burning pain. Before long, Evelyn couldn’t even blink without feeling intense pain, and she started to lose some of her vision.
“It was very painful for me to open my eyes, and bright sunlight only made it worse,” she explains sadly. She didn’t know what was causing her so much pain, and she feared she would lose her sight completely.
It was a very difficult time in Evelyn’s life. She couldn’t walk without someone to guide her, and she could barely open her eyes. Sadly, Evelyn’s condition continued on like that for five long months.
Lucky for Evelyn, an outreach screening camp organized by Operation Eyesight was held in her village.
Evelyn attended the camp, where she was screened and diagnosed with trachoma, a bacterial eye infection that causes permanent blindness if left untreated.
Evelyn was referred for trachoma surgery at the Maamba General Hospital. Finally, her suffering came to an end.
Today, Evelyn can open her eyes without experiencing any pain, and her remaining vision has been preserved.
Trachoma affects women and children most, as children will touch their faces with dirty hands, and mothers will develop the infection through contact with their kids. Unfortunately, women don’t usually access eye care services with the same frequency as men. In many cultures, women’s health isn’t seen as a priority, and other barriers, such as low income or distance to a health centre, prevent women from seeking help. But thanks to you, Evelyn and the other women of Muziyo received the care they needed!
“I’m really so grateful for all the help I received,” Evelyn says smiling. She’s happy that her treatment was provided free of cost, all thanks to our generous donors!
There are still millions of women like Evelyn who need your help. Make a donation today and give the gift of sight!