Last week I shared about the incredible prescription eyeglass distribution project that we just completed. In today’s video you will witness the moment these students to put on their new glasses for the first time ever!
“I can see!”
This life-changing project would not have been possible without the initiative of Dr. Jina Schaff, her friend and colleague, Dr. Jamie Anderson, and the very generous contributions of the Essilor Vision Foundation and MyEyeDr. Following a year of research and grant applications, operating a week-long clinic in Rwanda and another trip months later to deliver the glasses, these practical, personalized gifts dramatically enhanced the lives of 127 of our students and faculty. Thanks so much to each one of you for your care and generosity!
Another particularly special aspect of this project was involvement of Harry Pearson. Harry joined our team in October of 2021 for this distribution, while completing several other projects at Hope Haven Rwanda.
Harry’s story is interesting. As a young boy, his father observed that he was struggling to see. Before long, it was clear that Harry had severe vision challenges. It wasn’t long before Harry was fitted with eyeglasses that changed his life!
As he chatted with Ferdinand, one of our students who received prescription glasses, Harry shared part of his story and the impact that glasses have had on his life. As a recent mathematics graduate from University of Washington, Harry has excelled academically. Without proper eye care, his many successes would have been more difficult for sure!
As Harry shared his story with Ferdinand it was clear that they shared a unique bond. These two men, separated by a decade, both resonated with each other. Their quality of life was very limited before their eye challenges were addressed, but now they can both see clearly.
Ferdinand was thrilled. He said, “I am glad that the glasses have reached me and I am glad that I am going to see again! Thank you so much Hope Haven—love you so much.”
School, sports and daily chores at home will all be different now for Ferdinand. It was fascinating to watch Harry spend some time with Ferdinand. Harry taught him how to care for his new glasses, providing practical tips and lessons from his own experience.
Thank you Essilor Vision Foundation, MyEyeDr and our optometrist partners for making this special moment (and so many others) possible!
There are countless ways we can each serve this around us. As one of my favorite Proverbs reports, “Whoever refreshes others will be refreshed” (Proverbs 11:25). Who will you refresh this week?