It’s 2020, the year of vision, and this is a perfect time to focus on your kids’ eye health. Vision impacts every aspect of a child’s life, from learning, confidence and social interactions to participating in activities like sports, art or music.
Children often don’t know to ask for the help they desperately need because they don’t know they can’t see clearly. To them, blurry vision is normal.
Barriers to care – awareness, access and affordability
That was the case for Rebecca. “Before I got my glasses, I thought it was normal to see blurry. It was hard to see anything far away, like the board if I was in the back of the classroom,” Rebecca shares.
Vision problems are not unusual among school-age children. One in four schoolkids (2) in the U.S. has a vision issue serious enough to affect their ability to learn.
Rebecca was one of those children. Her reading teacher became concerned when she noticed Rebecca squinting in class and her grades began to drop, both common symptoms of vision problems.
Like millions of parents, Rebecca’s mom didn’t know she was having trouble seeing until the school nurse told her. In fact, as many as 44 percent of parents (3) are not aware that behavioral problems can be an indication that their child’s vision is impaired.
Rebecca’s school nurse diagnosed that she needed glasses during a vision screening, but the family faced another barrier — affordability.
How Essilor Vision Foundation helps solve the vision crisis
Eighty percent (4) of visual problems can be avoided or corrected, often with a pair of eyeglasses, but the cost of going to the eye doctor and getting glasses is too much for many families.
Fortunately, Essilor Vision Foundation’s Kids Vision for Life mobile clinic visited Rebecca’s school and she received a vision exam and a pair of glasses at no cost to her family.
“Now that I have glasses, I realize my vision before was horrible,” Rebecca says.
Her reading teacher noticed the difference immediately. “Rebecca is very happy all the time. She’s eager to answer questions, she’s eager to read, and her grades have improved tremendously.”
Rebecca loves her glasses. “They’re cute and comfortable and it feels like they were meant to be there.”
In addition to mobile clinics, Essilor Vision Foundation works with eye doctors and vision non-profits around the country to provide vision exams and eyeglasses to people who otherwise could not afford vision care.
Since 2007, Essilor Vision Foundation has provided more than 1.5 million pairs of eyeglasses to individuals in need.
Your can help kids like Rebecca see clearly
There are millions of children like Rebecca in this country who need vision care but whose families cannot afford it. You can help families like Rebecca’s by donating to Essilor Vision Foundation so no family receives a bill for vision services provided by EVF.
For every $50 donated, EVF can provide both a vision exam and a pair of glasses to a child in need at no cost to their family. In 2020, your donation will be matched so you can help two children with one $50 donation.
Donate today to give a child life-changing clear sight.
(1) School-aged vision: 6 to 18 years of age, aoa.org/patients-and-public/good-vision-throughout-life/childrens-vision/school-aged-vision-6-to-18-years-of-age?sso=y)
(2) Comprehensive Pediatric Eye and Vision Examination, aoa.uberflip.com/i/807465-cpg-pediatric-eye-and-vision-examination
(3) American Eye-Q Report Card, beareye.com/news/Eye-Q-Report-card.pdf
(4) Blindness and vision impairment, World Health Organization, who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs282/en/
Page published in February 2019
Page updated in February 2021