Marlon was once among the 17% of Nicaraguans who suffer from avoidable vision impairment. Just like many of his classmates, Marlon was unable to see the blackboard and struggling in school, all because he lacked access to an eye exam and glasses.
Today, Marlon can see! That’s because, in 2010, Optometry Giving Sight partnered with Brien Holden Vision Institute and Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity (VOSH) International to help support the establishment of the Optometría Médica at the Universidad Autónoma de Nicaragua (UNAN) in Managua. It’s the first optometry school in a country where only 5% of those who work in eye care are clinically trained.
The inaugural class graduated from UNAN in June 2016 and started serving in their communities. Marlon is one of many children the newly graduated optometrists have been able to help see a brighter future.
In October, VSP Global united with companies across the optical industry and eye care practices around the world to participate in the World Sight Day Challenge. The campaign raised more than $900,000 for Optometry Giving Sight to continue addressing avoidable vision impairment around the globe. That includes more than $40,000 raised or contributed by VSP Global employees on four continents to support the school of optometry in Nicaragua and other projects.
Support is needed for Optometry Giving Sight year-round. Find out how you can help.
Discover what improving long-term access to eye care and eyewear means for Marlon and the future of Nicaragua: