September 1, 2022

Sight Savers student organization hosting donation drive this month

Medical students have launched a month-long donation drive at the Wayne State University School of Medicine, Kresge Eye Institute, Henry Ford Hospital and the Detroit Medical Center to collect basic vision care supplies and monetary donations to benefit Sight Savers.

Sight Savers is a mobile, student-run vision clinic providing free eye examinations, reading glasses and vision education to patients at various clinics. Its primary location is at Cass Methodist Church in Detroit.

The drive is organized and supported by third-year medical students Julia Yee and Kaitlin Ross. Sight Savers coordinators for the year are Mahnoor Ayub, Varsha Kumar and Kaitlin Ziadeh.

A donation box labeled Sight Savers is located in the Scott Hall Cafeteria now through Sept. 24. Monetary donations will be collected via Venmo at @Kaitlin-Ziadeh.

Donations needed include:

Eyeglasses for adults (new or gently used)

Readers

Distance vision/bifocals

Sunglasses

Eyeglass cases (new or gently used, minimal signs of wear)

Lens wipes (unused)

Lens-cleaning spray

Contact lens solution (unopened, unused, not expired)

Eyewear straps/retainers such as Croakies

Eye lubricant drops (unopened, unused, not expired)

“Patients across these different sites have expressed a great need for more options for reading glasses and glasses for distance vision,” Ayub said. “Our patients also frequently inquire about sunglasses for sun protection and articles that can help them care for their glasses, such as microfiber cloths for cleaning and glass cases. As a free clinic providing basic vision care to some of Detroit’s most vulnerable communities, we hope to proactively provide these resources to our patients to relieve some of the financial stress associated with accessing eye care. We are grateful to have received a large donation of glasses from Scott Hall Facilities at the School of Medicine. We would really appreciate if our student community would help us clean and organize these glasses so we are better equipped to distribute them to our patients.”

“We offer free eyeglasses and educate our community about eye disease prevention. At Sight Savers, student volunteers can expect to practice patient interview skills and learn hands-on techniques such as measuring intraocular pressure with a Tonopen, examining the retina with a direct ophthalmoscope and more,” Ayub added. “In the 2021-2022 year so far, we have had the privilege to serve upward of a 100 patients between our mobile clinics at the Cass Methodist Church, Robert R. Frank Student Run Free Clinic and the Amigos Medicos Clinic at the Ford Resource Center.”

Sight Savers does not provide prescriptions for glasses. Patients try the reading glasses available and are administered a visual acuity test.

The student organization will host its “Clean and Organize” events every Tuesday and Thursday in September from 5 to 6 p.m. in the Scott Hall Cafeteria. Sign-up emails will be sent to the student body. Volunteers are eligible for one clinical service learning hour.

If these dates do not work for some students or you would like to donate via an alternative method, email mahnoor.ayub@med.wayne.edu.

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