Current Projects of the IGOF


The ISEPS Global Ophthalmology Foundation has evaluated and funded the following projects:

• Vinh Linh Blind Association (VBA) -- Income generation project; $8,010 (2019)

  • The Illinois Society of Eye Physicians & Surgeons has actively supported the Vinh Linh Blind Association in Quang Tri Province, Vietnam, for a number of years. In addition to funding a more modern facility in which clients can learn life skills and develop a means to support themselves, ISEPS -- and the IGOF -- provide support for various income-generating projects which benefit individuals who are visually impaired, as well as the Vinh Linh Blind Association itself.
  • The objective of this project is to enhance productivity and the quality of incense making business, helping the visually impaired and handicapped people in VBA self-sustained and confident in life. Specifically, this grant will support VBA with a new working station for incense making, including drying space, packaging machine, and dormitory beds for workers.
  • Vinh Linh Blind Association was established in 1996 as a special social organization for helping the visually impaired and disabled people in Vinh Linh district, Quang Tri Province, Vietnam. Most of the members are from poor families. VBA serves as a place for meetings, cultural sharing, learning and working. Since its establishment, VBA has been training its members to produce products such as incense, chopsticks, and toothpicks. They also provide massage classes in order to provide vocational skills to their members. So far, incense-making business has gained most profit for VBA, helping to create a monthly income of $70-75 per member.

• Eye Care Outreach in the Cam Lo District of Quang Tri Province; $20,540 (2019)

  • Our partner in Vietnam, the Community Development Fund, has implemented eye care outreach projects in the Vinh Linh District and the Gio Linh District. The goal is to identify those with vision problems or eye diseases which require treatment, especially among school children. The Cam Lo project is similar in design and scope to these previously successful programs.
  • The objectives of the project are to Improve the eye screening capacity for grassroots doctors at Commune Health Centers in Cam Lo District so that they can provide service to local people in the area. Eye screening and refraction exams will be performed for schoolchildren in 11 secondary schools in Cam Lo District. Eyeglasses will be provided for all schoolchildren with refraction issues. Partners in this project will include the Community Development Fund; the provincial Department of Health; the Quang Tri Eye Center; Cam Lo District Hospital; nine Commune Health Centers in Cam Lo district; and 11 secondary schools in Cam Lo district.

• Ophthalmologist Training Scholarship - Lancaster Course and Observership; $10,000 (2019)

  • For a number of years, ISEPS has supported the Quang Tri Eye Center and its doctors, especially in skill enhancement. Previously, we sponsored two ophthalmologists who attended the American Academy of Ophthalmology meeting in Chicago, as well as participation in a cataract surgery course conducted at the Vietnam National Institute of Ophthalmology in Hanoi through a partnership with Alcon.
  • This year, we funded a $10,000 scholarship through the Hawaiian Eye Foundation so that a Quang Tri ophthalmologist, Dr.Bui Thi Van Anh, was able to participate in the Lancaster Course for Ophthalmology held each summer at Colby College in Waterville, Maine. This was followed by a month-long observership hosted by the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Illinois at Chicago in which our visiting physician worked closely with UIC faculty on a number of projects, as well as attending various educational workshops. Dr. Van Anh said she found these experiences to valuable and greatly enhanced her medical skills. Dr. Van Anh was nominated for this scholarship by our friend and colleague in Ho Chi Minh City, Nam Tran Pham, MD.

The IGOF Board will be considering additional projects in the coming months.

Last Updated on Thursday, September 05, 2019 06:29 PM