Jo Forss

In October 2017 I am volunteering on a Vision Aid Overseas assignment to Nekemte in Ethiopia where there is very little provision of Eye Health Services, and am fundraising for this very worthwhile charity.

During the visit I will be training Ophthalmic Nurses and Eye Clinic Technicians in the local Vision Centre as well as performing eye tests in the local hospital and at outreach clinics.

640 million people worldwide are visually impaired due to an uncorrected refractive error, or in other words not having access to eye tests and glasses and 90% of these people are in Africa. Providing eye tests and spectacles can prevent a nurse having to give up work when they need reading glasses or enable a child to get an education when they cannot see the blackboard. But more importantly Vision Aid Overseas also trains local people to be able to provide eye tests full time in the community.

In 1985, I qualified as an Optometrist, coincidentally the same year Vision Aid Overseas was founded and have been a supporter of their work ever since. For the last 15 years my practice has collected old spectacles for recycling for VAO and it has been a long held ambition of mine to volunteer on one of their assignment. After reaching a milestone birthday, I decided there is no time like the present and undertook the training. I am now looking forward to my first overseas assignment to Nekemte in Ethopia later this year as well as trying to raise £1700 for Vision Aid Overseas and the fantastic work they do.

I would really appreciate any support you may be able to give.

Jo Forss