We are a team of five Optometry students at Cardiff University that are travelling to rural areas of Romania in July 2017 to provide free eye care.
In 2014 the World Health Organisation reported that 'approximately 90% of people who are visually impaired live in developing countries' and that 'The leading cause of visual impairment globally is uncorrected refractive error'. Refractive error can be simply corrected with the access to spectacles. However Romania has the highest poverty rates in the European Union. The poorest people live in the remote mountainous areas which have little to no access to healthcare and spectacles, meaning refractive error is often left uncorrected.
Our aim is to provide free vision screenings and spectacles to over 1500 people in five days in villages in the Carpathian Mountains, near to Vatra Dornei. We will be accompanied by three qualified Optometrists from Wales, UK including David Peter Hong who was awarded an MBE in 2016 for his continuous work in Optometry volunteer projects across Malawi, Moldova and Romania over the years. Last year a similar refraction project ran by Peter Hong with Cardiff University students in Romania was very successful, providing 1500 people with spectacles in five days. We are very enthusiastic about making a difference and continuing this work this summer!
The more money we raise the more spectacles we can provide and the more people we can help. Visual correction is vital, without it children struggle to learn and adults cannot work to earn the money needed to feed and support their family - it's a vicious cycle that we can help to break. We have set a target to raise a total of £3250 as a team to provide eye care and spectacles to the people of rural Romania. A donation of just £1 can provide one pair of spectacles which can completely change a person’s life.
Any donations will be greatly appreciated not only by us but by the people that we can help in Romania!