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As part of efforts to fight glaucoma, the second leading cause of blindness globally, a non governmental organisation, Omotara Glaucoma Foundation, has partnered the Nigerian Optometric Association to establish Glaucoma Awareness club in secondary schools in Ondo State.
The Pioneer club was inaugurated at St Louis Grammar School Akure at an event to mark the 2020 World Glaucoma Week with the theme Beat Invisible Glaucoma” (BIG).
Founder of the Foundation, Olufunke Ladapo, who almost lost her eyes to glaucoma said her goal is to protect future generation from sight loss as a result of Glaucoma through advocacy and public education on the need to get tested and be self conscious about a healthy eye.
She said the foundation successfully hosted its first edition last year, with testimonies of early detection as a result of the free screening and subsequent referral to the University of Medical Sciences, Teaching Hospital, UMIMEDTH and Millennium Eye Centre, Akure for further diagnosis and treatment.
“We are celebrating this first anniversary of the foundation with free eyes screening,a public lecture, decoration of Glaucoma Ambassadors and Inauguration of Glaucoma Club
“I am so proud to say that we are stronger and ready to do more and I am very optimistic that Omotara foundation (named after my Grand Mother who lost both eyes to glaucoma before she passed on) is here to stay, it going to be impactful and it is sustainable.”
Chairman of Nigerian Optometric Association, Ondo State Chapter, Dr Funmi Samo in a lecture said Glaucoma is an incurable terrible eye related disease that causes reduction in vision and eventually irreversible blindness.
She advocated regular screening and right treatment to reduce the global burden and ensure more healthy eyes with antendant socio economic implications.
The event featured the inauguration of the Glaucoma awareness club and decoration of ambassadors.
The ambassadors include the Chief of Staff to Ondo state governor, Chief Olugbenga Ale, The Commissioner for Health, Dr Wahab Adegbenro, the CMD of UMIMEDTH, the Principal of St Louis Grammar School, Mrs Omobolanle Ayintete, and the Olupenmen Elect, Oba Ebenezer Adewunmi Ogunmolasuyi.
Responding on behalf of the Glaucoma Ambassadors, the Olupenmen Elect promised to host the next edition of the celebration in Owo in addition to other support for the Foundation.
Over 500 students of the school were also screened for Glaucoma at the event.