World Sight Day: Over 1000 pupils and teachers benefit free eye screening

Some children undergoing eye screening at Babile
Some children undergoing eye screening at Babile

About 1020 school children and teachers in the Babile Circuit, Lawra Municipality, have benefited from free eye screening by Bliss Eye Care, a private eye clinic in Wa.

The exercise, which was to mark the commemoration of the 2022 World Sight Day on the theme: “Love Your Eyes”, also benefited students of the Birifoh Senior High School.

Every second Thursday of October had been set aside as World Sight Day to create awareness of the need for proper eye care.

Dr. Zakarea Al-hassan Balure, the founder and Manager of Bliss Eye Care, told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in an interview at Babile that some of the beneficiaries were diagnosed with conjunctivitis and refractive errors.

He said two children who were diagnosed with cataracts would also be offered surgery.

“We have booked December for the surgery in Wa and we will follow to be sure that these children are operated on so that they will have good eyes to come back to school”, Dr. Balure explained.

He said two children also had conditions that required them to access formal education in a special school.

The Bliss Eye Care had been organising free eye screening for school children under its Blissful Sight for Kids project, but Dr. Balure said they included teachers in the screening exercise due to the uniqueness of the day being commemorated.

The beneficiaries who required reading glasses were also provided at no cost as part of the efforts of the benefactor to ensure that eye problems did not hamper quality teaching and learning or denied children their right to education.

He, therefore, urged the public to take responsibility for protecting their own eyes by going for regular eye checkups, at least once every year, and consulting the eye specialist when the need arose.

“Stop traditional medications because they seriously damage the eyes. Don’t self-medicate and don’t use someone’s medicine or glasses”, he advised.
Dr. Balure also urged the teachers and children who were given sight aids to use them as it would help improve their vision.

Reverend Father Zachariah Nabile, the Priest in charge of the Babile Catholic Church, emphasised the importance of good sight of children to their holistic development.

He said children in Babile had not had eye screening for a very long time which informed his decision to collaborate with head teachers and other stakeholders in the Babile Circuit and the municipality to organise free eye screening for the children who were most vulnerable.

Rev. Fr. Nabile explained that it was not enough to educate the child on only book knowledge but also their physical development and stressed the need for regular eye screening for children.

The beneficiaries expressed gratitude to Bliss Eye Care for the intervention and said bringing the free screening to their doorsteps was a testament to the love of Bliss Eye Care for the children’s education.

Mr Ibrahim Kasim, a beneficiary teacher at the Babile M/A Junior High School “A”, said he, previously, could not see properly to read from the books and was happy that he had been given reading glasses to aid him in his work.

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