It was the San Pedro Lions Club that spearheaded a drive to conduct free eye screening for children on the island of Ambergris Caye, Belize that lead to the Lions Club International Foundation of the International Association of Lions Clubs to offer a grant that enabled all the Lions Clubs in the country to use Special Portable Eye Screeners to conduct a LIONS- Belize National Children Eye Screening Program.
The program kicked off in San Pedro this weekend as Lions and Leo members were trained to use the Eye Screeners by Lion Dr. Edward Cordes, Lions Clubs International Past International Director and Head of the Lions Kid Sight USA, which is a Lions Clubs International USA Eye Screening Program, and Ms. Cyd McDowell, who is the President of Plus Optix, the company from which the Eye Screeners were bought.
On Saturday, August 15, 2015, the trainers overlooked the screening process as children visited the Lions Den to have their vision checked. Screening only took place for a couple hours in the morning as the machines had to be taken to other clubs to train their members. Outgoing San Pedro Lions President Rigoberto Kumul informed Ambergris Today that the club has secured a donation which will have the island club acquiring its own portable eye screeners so that the San Pedro Lions Club can conduct regular eye screening for children.
The Lions Clubs in Belize have committed to pay for the eye glasses for children who need them, and for whom it is determined that the parents/guardians cannot afford to pay for the eye glasses. The screenings on the island were very successful and a handful of children were referred to have their eyes checked by an oculist. The portable eye screeners detect early eyesight problems that can be addressed before they get worse; it’s a fast and effective device.
The San Pedro Lions Club will be responsible for screenings in Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker and the Corozal District, while inland clubs will be responsible for the various clubs elsewhere in the country.