What has drawn me to Seva Canada over the years, first as staff, then as a donor and volunteer, and now as Executive Director, is that our work engages the heart and the mind. Nurturing sustainable vision programs in low-resource settings is complex, but at the patient level, eye care has a unique magic in its often quick results - and of course the wonder of clear vision.
Community Eye Centres (CECs), for example, require a lot of work behind the scenes before they are ready to launch. Assessing the population need, building the local support, finding the right staffing, sourcing cost-effective equipment, establishing the financial model, and setting up the monitoring and evaluation systems needed to create a Community Eye Centre in a remote area is a lengthy and labour-intensive process. But, for the child who visits that centre and gets fitted with a pair of glasses, the effect is instantaneous. In a moment, that child can see, go back to being a kid, and look forward to a brighter future.
The time it takes to train an eye doctor spans years - but the 15-minute cataract surgery that a skilled physician can perform goes by in the blink of an eye. And the next day, like a miracle, our patient who was once blind can now see and enjoy a cascade of immediate, life-altering benefits.
And a side bar: the fact that - even during the throws of economic inflation - cataract surgery can still be done for just $50, and glasses provided for just $5, is a secondary miracle. This is thanks to the efficiency and ingenuity of our program partners, whom you will read about in this newsletter.
Thank you for being part of Seva Canada, and for making a profound and immediate impact in the lives of others.