BENEFITING: RETINA GLOBAL
“Of all the senses, sight must be the most delightful.” So said Helen Keller almost a century back, when there were no options to prevent or treat blinding conditions. With advances in expertise and technology in our world today, we still have areas around the world where people are going blind. Belize is one such country. Belize has a major diabetes burden. With a prevalence of diabetes of 16% in a total population of 325,000, a significant number of the population have or are likely to develop diabetic retinopathy, a potentially blinding disorder. Belize has no retina specialist in the country. Patients either have to travel abroad to get their eyes checked, or wait for a retinal specialist to come to Belize and offer his/her services. With the lack or delay in diagnosis, the affected person is likely to go blind before any help may reach him/her. Why have we chosen Belize? Well, they have no retina specialist. And their people are losing vision every day. Retina Global's mission is to bring a sustainable difference in the way things currently stand in Belize. We are currently providing telemedicine services to the country, for free, with our doctors reporting on images. But this only helps in pointing out the disease pattern; we need a retinal specialist on the ground to evaluate and treat the patient. To help provide retinal specialist care round the year, our qualified and experienced retina specialists will volunteer their time to work in Belize for a week at a time. With a trip planned every month, we hope we can help prevent blindness in a significant number of people in Belize. The industry will provide instrumentation and medications. But we need your support to help bring 1-2 retinal specialist/s to Belize once every month. They will work for a week, for free, examining patients, providing laser treatment or injections in the eye, or operating on those with advanced disease. Visits by other retinal specialists in subsequent months will provide a good follow-up, important in management of diabetic retinopathy, while there is none today. Our goal is to find a solution to the current lack of retinal specialist in Belize. These visits will help provide education and training in retinal work to local ophthalmologists. We will also identify a young local ophthalmologist, who, apart from receiving hands-on training during our visits, will be provided with additional and advanced training in a reputed eye institute in the US. Expenses will include basic travel and stay in Belize for volunteers. The details are as given below: Each trip (travel & stay for one person) -> $3,000 Two volunteers in each trip -> $6,000 12 trips in a year -> $6000 x 12 => $72,000 Support (includes insurance, logistics support, etc.) -> $6,000 for the year. TOTAL: $78,000 Why should you support us? One, importantly, your support will help save someone’s sight. Additionally, Retina Global being a nonprofit with a 501(c)(3) designation, allows you to claim the maximum allowable tax benefit for your donation. We will keep you informed about the work because of your support. Details, such as number of patients examined, treated and operated on will be shared, along with images on the website or sent via personal emails to you if you share them with us. We do hope that you will consider supporting this cause. Let’s work together to help make a difference, one person, one eye, at a time.