Johnson & Johnson Vision and Lions Clubs International Foundation celebrate 20 years of ‘Sight For Kids’, conduct vision screening for over 500 children from low-income schools in Kolkata, West Bengal – India Education Diary

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Kolkata : Johnson & Johnson Vision*, a global leader in the eye health category and a part of Johnson & Johnson MedTech**, and Lions Clubs International Foundation today celebrates 20years of ‘Sight For Kids’, their school-based eye health program. Co-founded by Johnson & Johnson Vision and Lions Clubs International Foundation in 2002, the Sight for Kids program aims to bridge the gap in access to eye care by providing comprehensive eye health services for children from low-income and underserved communities. To mark the occasion, a vision screening for over 500 children was organised in Kolkata, West Bengal.

The two-day program took place at Lions Safari Park and Calcutta Greater Vidya Mandir School. Witnessing leading eye care professionals, local ophthalmological associations, NGO/community partners, Johnson & Johnson Vision representatives, and local Lions were present to honour the cause. The Sight For Kids program has operated across West Bengal since 2004.

In the last 20 years, the program has reached more than 42 million students in underserved communities in Asia, Africa, and the U.S., providing eye health treatment to 600,000 children across the world. In India, through a community and a school-based model, Sight For Kids has facilitated vision assessment for 37 million children. The program has equipped communities with critical tools to ensure children have access to eye care for clear and healthy vision.

Emphasizing the organization’s aim to elevate eye health awareness in India, Tiny Sengupta, Business Unit Director, Vision Care India, Johnson & Johnson Vision said, “It is an absolute honour to partner with Lions Clubs International Foundation and celebrate the 20-year milestone of Sight For Kids. Healthy eyesight plays a critical role in early childhood development – from a child’s academic performance to co-curricular activities self-esteem and overall well-being. However, globally, morethan 312 million children suffer from myopia, and half of them continue to live undetected and untreated.[1]Every child deserves a chance to see the world clearly. Through Sight for Kids, we are not only bringing free eye care to children who need it the most, but also training schoolteachers to identify children suffering from vision impairment or eye ailments.”

To date,Sight For Kids has provided 500,000 thousand pairs of eyeglasses to children across the world, to empower them to realise their dreams.”

Commenting on the importance of increasing access to eye care, Mr. A. P. Singh, Third Vice President, Lions Clubs International Foundation, Lions Clubs International Foundation said, “Together with Johnson & Johnson Vision, we are proud to see our Lions and eye care professionals work towards achieving our mission of providing comprehensive eye health servicesto underprivileged children to equip them with clear and healthy vision.Through our extensive engagements, we found that teachers are in a unique position to identify behavioural changes and notice when children suffer from vision impairment. This critical insight has led us to bolster our approach by training 200,000 teachers across the world to date.”

‘Sight For Kids’is one of the longest running public-private vision-screening programs in the world, that provides teachers with training to deliver eye health education and perform visual acuity tests for common eye conditions with the support of optometrists. Johnson & Johnson Vision in partnership with Lions Clubs International Foundation envisions reaching children across borders to provide them with healthy eyesight and strive towards greater equity in eye care.
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