On this Diwali,
the festival of lights,
Help give someone
the gift of SIGHT.
India has the largest number of blind people anywhere in the world. With one in every 4 blind people living in India, the governmental & other organizations face a monumental task to reduce this disparity. A significant portion of this blindness is caused by causes such as cataract, but we are seeing a major increase in retinal diseases such as diabetic retinopathy due to the changing food habits and increasing prevalence of life-style diseases such as diabetes & blood pressure.
India has about 6 doctors per 10,000 population in urban areas; this number goes down to about 0.6 per 10,000 in rural countryside where about 70% of the Indian population lives. Only a handful of these doctors are retinal specialists, and majority of them choose to locate in urbanized cities. With lack of expertise available to significant number of population, the afflicted either do not seek care at all, or seek it when it is too late. Retinal diseases require increased awareness as well as early diagnosis for best outcomes. Also, those who do practice retinal care in these areas lack the right equipment due to its significant costs.
To alleviate the increasing number of people with retinal blindness, Friends of Retina India are focused on two major programs;
- Short term fellowships to Indian doctors in the US for them to learn the latest in retinal care & research, which they can then provide to their community on return to India, and
- Providing instrumentation to nonprofit hospitals in rural areas of India.
This fundraiser will help us raise $25,000 with the help of grant from a benevolent donor, who has promised us a donation of $5,000 if we are able to raise the other $20,000.
With this money, we will:
- Invite two doctors from India to come to the US for a short term fellowship in a major eye hospital.
- Donate a retina equipment to a nonprofit hospital in India
Doctor training: During this fellowship, the two doctors will work with an internationally renowned retinal specialist (the mentor), observe the mentor in the clinic and in the operating room, as well as perform research under the direction of the mentor. This experience will help them offer the latest treatment to their patients, on their return to India, as well as research to find solutions to the problems that face patients in India.
Donation of Instrument: A nonprofit hospital in India requires a 'vitrectomy' machine - this machine allows retina doctors to operate on patients with such serious conditions as retinal detachment, diabeteic retinopathy, eye trauma, etc. We are in touch with the industry to give us the machine on the best possible terms, so that we can send it to the hospital in earnest.
We look forward to your support in this important objective of helping give people the GIFT of SIGHT.
We thank you for your generous help & support.
Friends of Retina India is a registered charity in California, and is fiscally sponsored by OneOC, which is a registered 501(c)(3) organization. You will receive a tax-benefit receipt issued by OneOC.