Monday, September 21, 2009

Petrolandia (Week Two Clinic) Wrap Up

The last week of clinic at Petrolandia was eventful, emotional, and went by way too quickly. This is a town so small that many locals we spoke to on the airplanes had never even heard of it. We were the first Americans that many of the children had ever seen in their town. This may help explain why the kids were so amazing to us, so loving, and appreciative of any attention that we paid to them. Their faces lit up when given a small sticker or an "Oi" (hello) and a smile. In the end, we saw over 2,100 children, and made approximately 1,000 glasses on site (the rest will be made locally and sent to the school that the child/recipient attends.)

Maiko is 11 years old, and in 3rd grade (two years behind). He sits in the front row of his class and still cannot see the board and gets frequent headaches (the symptoms we are all familiar with of someone who needs glasses). His RX is a -2, -2.50. His father sells parakeets and is a fisherman. His mother said that they had to save for 4 years to be able to afford his 1st pair of glasses which he received and lost not long ago- and are still paying on. When Robert B. from Wisconsin dispensed Maiko's new glasses, both he and his mother were very thankful and appreciative. The mother was crying because she was afraid that Maiko's vision would worsen and he would go blind eventually. Here are a couple of amazing Mark Lyons photos of Maiko.

Italo is a 6 year old boy who was bumping into walls and falling down often. With a -7, -7.50 RX, and no eyeglasses, you can understand why. After we dispensed his glasses in his home, Mark L. asked that the lights be turned off and that Italo walk around a little. He was able to do so for the first time with no incident, and he and his parents were thrilled.

At our last dinner with the FAV in Petrolandia, we were gifted with a beautiful song written by one of the FAV members, and performed for all of us acapella in Portuguese. It was a beautiful night, full of appreciation from both sides for what we accomplished for the first time ever as a team.

This inaugural Brazil clinic was full of firsts for OneSight. It was our first time in Brazil (after many attempts), the first time we made eyeglasses on sight, and first time partnering with the Fundacao Altino Ventura (FAV) and using their many Ophthalmologists. We cannot thank the FAV enough for taking such incredible care of us for two weeks. They were the most gracious of hosts and made our jobs incredibly easy, freeing us up to spend more one on one time with the children. These kids not only got new glasses, but they received a little kindness and love from volunteers who came from all over the world just to see them. It meant the world to these kids to have us there, and it meant the world to us to be there. I know that we would each like to thank OneSight with all of our hearts for this truly magical opportunity, which each of us will hold close to us for the rest of our lives.

Hurry and you too can have a OneSight Life Changing opportunity. The 2010 OneSight Clinic applications are available only until October 9th. Go to, click on "Luxottica Employees", Log In: Welcome, Password: gtgos, and complete your application.

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