The World Health Organization reports that 90% of the 285 million visually impaired people live in developing countries. More than one million people are classified as blind simply because they do not have glasses. Among those who need glasses, 19 million are less than 15 years old. For children, if they are unable to read the printed page or the blackboard, they are left behind at school.
Dr. Pete Korpi knows that there is no predicting where these children might be found. However, after more than 20 vision mission trips, Dr. Pete knows that in every project he will find at least a couple of children whose worlds have opened by simply getting glasses. Through Pete’s experience he knows that approximately 4 to 10% of the children would benefit from having glasses, and about 1% of the children have prescriptions that are game changers.
Dr. Pete has committed weeks of his time this year to evaluate more than 2,400 VisionTrust children and teachers. Some ask if it’s worth all the expense and travel to find that one “game changer”. Dr. Pete would say, “Yes!” More than 240 children now have glasses and 24 children have had their lives drastically changed.
Recently in Guatemala the “game changer” was Lester. His teachers said he was kind of a loner—he didn’t interact with other children. He was a little kid with a vacant look on his face. When Dr. Pete had a chance to evaluate Lester, it became clear that the little boy could only see about four inches ahead of him. No wonder Lester wasn’t running around with the other kids, or following things well at school. Dr. Pete knows this will open up his world and many at the school have no doubt that Lester is going to be unstoppable.
We thank God for the hearts of volunteers like Dr. Pete and pray that God will continue to lead him to the children who need the “game changer”!
Help us provide children around the world with sight. Your gift will provide for glasses, equipment and bring in experts like Pete to develop local expertise over time.