We have just received the glasses!!
July 12, 2017
BENEFITING: PROJECT AMAZONAS INC
I volunteer with Project Amazonas, Inc. on an ongoing basis. Through them I am able to make my life-long dream come true: to do humanitarian work in the remote Amazon rainforest.
Every medical trip I engage on, brings new challenges. Ideas call for action when I see that so much can be done for these people that, due to their geographical isolation, do not have access to basic medical assistance. They are the guardians of the planet's lungs.
Everyone can help on this endeavour to take care of the Amazon rainforest and its people. Some of us would get numerous vaccines and profilaxis medication, and set on to the tropical jungle. Some others, as may be your case, can offer an essential help and accompany me from your office desk or from the swimmingpool at your home, just by clicking "Donate".
Passion is a key factor for moving forward on a project, but from a practical and less romantic point of view, money is what allows a humanitarian activity to reach people.
Believe me, any amount you can contribute with, is highly appreciated!!
All funds donated for this initiative will be received directly by Project Amazonas. I will be transparent and keep you updated at every stage.
Together, we make a huge difference !
HOW MY INITIATIVE FOR GLASSES FOR PRESBYOPIA WAS ORIGINATED:
In April-May, 2017, I volunteered on Project Amazonas' medical boat trip providing health services and education to the indigenous communities of the Ampiyacu and Yahuasyacu Rivers in the Peruvian Amazon rainforest. I performed the intake tasks for every patient, as well as measuring height, weight and checking their presenting complaint. I observed that many people over 45 expressed: "I cannot see properly; I need glasses".
Presbyopia is a condition associated with aging that results in progressively worsening ability to focus on close objects. Symptoms include a headaches, and eyestrain. Diagnosis is by an eye exam. Treatment is with eye glasses.
INITIATIVE'S OBJECTIVE: Perform eye exams and dispense graduated glasses to people with presbyopia in indigenous communities of the Ampiyacu and Yahuasyacu Rivers, department of Loreto, Peru.
CONTEXT: The department of Loreto, Peru, has around one million inhabitants. 45% live in Iquitos, capital city of Loreto. The rest live in more than 2000 indigenous communities, small and remote, scattered along the rivers in the Amazon basin. They can be accessed only by boat. Reaching a healthcare center might mean several days by boat, whether rowing or with the aid of a small motor, for those few that can afford buying fuel. These healthcare centers do not perform visual tests, neither do they prescribe and dispense glasses. Most of these communities only see a doctor once a year, when Project Amazonas arrives with its medical boat trip.
THE PROBLEM: Having sight diminished by presbyopia, negatively affects people's safety and quality of life, as well as the community economy. With a limited vision people are prone to accidents in their everyday life, when cooking or while working with the machete and with the fish hooks.
The community's subsistence is based on fishing, hunting and handicrafts such as chambira baskets, nets, hooks, palm leaves roofs, carved bowls for food, and wooden boats and paddles. These activities get seriously affected with diminished sight and the person turns unproductive and dependent on family members. There is also a strong social component. By not being able to participate in them, social isolation increases.
My initiative shall contribute to enhance people's quality of life, their safety and production capacity, as well as the economy and wellbeing of each community as a whole.
DIRECT BENEFICIARIES: Indigenous people -boras, yaguas, ocaínas, huitotos- living in the remote river communities of the Ampiyacu and Yahuasyacu Rivers, department of Loreto, Perú. Population in theses communities -Ancon Colonia, Brillo Nuevo, Nuevo Perú, Esperanza, Puerto Izango, Porvenir, Tierra Firme, Estirón del Cuzco- rise to around 1400 people, with a 30% being over 43, age at which presbyopia starts showing.
INDIRECT BENEFICIARIES: Family members that live with people with presbyopia as, on receiving the graduated glasses, the affected person will regain autonomy . The whole community benefits, as the person turns into a productive and socially active community member again.
MORE: Silvana A. Savio, Ph.D volunteers for Project Amazonas, a non-political, non-sectarian NGO working since 1994 to serve the people of the Amazon and conserve the rainforest. Project Amazonas initiates, promotes, and coordinates medical, humanitarian, and research activities in the department of Loreto in the Peruvian Amazon. https://www.projectamazonas.org
In preparation for this project, Silvana completed a 6-week online course in Global Blindness: Planning and Managing Eye Care Services, offered by the London School of Hygene and Tropical Medicine. http://open.lshtm.ac.uk. This course is based on Vision 2020: The Right to Sight Initiative (WHO) and Global Action Plan 2014-2019, in pursuance of the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.
Graduated glasses will be bought from RestoringVision , a non-profit organization dedicated to distributing new reading glasses and sunglasses to groups and organizations helping those in need. http://restoringvision.org
You may visit this campaign in Spanish at:
you will find some additional information regarding donations from outside the USA.