The Pátzcuaro Vision Campaign, conducted by Volunteer Optometrists in Service to Humanity along with volunteers from our community, have provided two clinics to examine and distribute glasses to lower income members of this area. VOSH Ohio’s dedicated team of optometrists and support staff tested over 2000 people in Pátzcuaro, Santa Clara del Cobre and Tzurumútaro in November 2009 and February 2018 and fitted nearly all of them with glasses. Not surprisingly, there were many people who had more severe vision issues, especially among campesinos, artesanos and other people who’ve worked outside all their lives or have worked in smoky or toxic environments.
During the 2018 mission VOSH Ohio identified over 80 eyes that needed cataract or other ophthalmic surgeries. After meeting with each patient, the list was narrowed to 33 surgeries. Locally we interviewed several and selected an ophthalmologist and clinic in Morelia to perform the surgeries, which began late 2018.
VOSH Ohio initially donated $10,000 USD towards these surgeries to help get the Cataract Surgery Project started and the remainder of the funds were raised by a benefit event Give Thanks for Sight in November 2018, as well as help from Charity Bingo, Tom Constantine as a representative of the Gringo Cocktail Party, Richard and Joan Lo Guidice, private donations and funds generated from the sales at our community based second-hand store/project, Segunda de Primera in Tzurumútaro.
Once the original list of 33 cataract surgery patients was completed, we continued to receive additional requests for assistance and as of May 2020 we have provided over 40 successful surgeries.
There is an ongoing wait list of surgery recipients. If you are able to help financially to restore eye sight of low income members of our community, you can donate using your credit card or PayPal account by clicking the button below.
In the fall of 2018 we had a fabulous benefit called Give Thanks for Sight, which raised everyone’s spirits and enough money to cover five eye surgeries that were performed in 2019.
Plans for another Bluegrass/Purepecha music, food, drink, dancing benefit event is tentatively planned for November 2020. Stay tuned for more information regarding this ‘not to be missed’ fiesta.