Vision for Bangladesh is helping the blind to see
A UK registered charity called Vision for Bangladesh is helping the blind to see by funding simple and effective eye treatments in Bangladesh for children whose parents are poor and cannot afford the surgery.
Rachel Andrews retired after 25 years from her position as Pediatric and adult Ophthalmic Sister at West Suffolk Hospital’s Eye Treatment Centre in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. Her passion for this area of medicine has led her to Moulvibazar, Bangladesh.
In 2006 Rachel visited Moulvibazar Eye Hospital with a small team to help train the doctors and nurses in ophthalmic nursing and surgery. They went with the charity ORBIS who are part of the World Health Organization initiative, Vision 2020, working to eliminate avoidable world blindness by the year 2020.
I have met Rachel at a Dinner Party earlier this month for Biswanath 8UK an organisation dedicated to working for the habitants of Biswanath. I was inspired by her speech and commitment over the past 13 years to help children from poor families suffering unnecessarily because their families could not afford or unaware of simple eye treatments.
The charity Vision for Bangladesh has been formed to find the children in remote Bangladesh villages going blind due to malnutrition ignorance and extreme poverty. Below photo shows before and after surgery for a blind child.
Rachel in a short statement said “This is totally an avoidable blindness which only needs a short cataract operation to restore their vision. We need to find these children as the parents are not going to bring them forward for treatment, due to lack of information and inability to pay.”
“Unless we find these children, they will remain blind, have a life of sadness, and will be a burden to their families and society. We work alongside the BNSB Hospital Moulvibazar Bangladesh where I have been doing voluntary work for 13 years.”
“Bangladesh has 40,000 children who are blind, roughly 80% of this is due to cataract. There is a population of 500,000 Bangladeshi people in the UK and if everyone gave £5, all these children going blind due to cataract, would have the vision restored to at least one eye…wow, how wonderful would that be!”
“Vision for Bangladesh wants to do their very best to reach as many children as possible, but we need the help of the UK and Bangladeshi community to help us fund this support. For the cost of £85 a child’s life can be transformed, they can go to school and we can dry the tears of the extremely poor parents.”
Moulvibazar Hospital is run mainly from charitable funds. With 160 staff, the incurring costs are growing, especially as the population become aware of treatment being available. As word spreads that blindness can be cured in a high percentage of patient, the demand is sure to increase. The hospital performs 4,000 operations on adult and child cataracts every year. Photo on the left are of three brothers with their vision restored.
You can support Rachel and the Team at Moulvibazar Hospital to help young children in Bangladesh with eye problems. To donate visit www.vfb.org.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. You can also send cheques made payable to “Vision For Bangladesh” and post to 25 Winsford Road, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk , IP32 7JJ.