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Send the check to the next Address:

Charitas
51 Sherbrooke W., Montreal, QC. Canada, H5Z 4T9.

(Please mention in the check for which cause you donate).

Funding Area: Health

Founded in 1936, the Prevention of Blindness Society of Metropolitan Washington® (POB) is dedicated to the improvement and preservation of sight and quality of life by providing services and education, and by championing healthy vision and innovation to everyone in our area.

POB’s headquarters are located in Washington, D.C., and the organization serves the District of Columbia, Montgomery and Prince George’s counties of Maryland, and Northern Virginia.

Our involvement: The Marty Tomberg Charitable Fund has financially supported this organization.

Projects We Support

Pop-Up Eyeglasses Clinic for Children – Pilot
School-age children from socioeconomically disadvantaged households need comprehensive vision care services that often are overlooked or unattainable due to various barriers of living in low income households and communities. It is our goal to increase the number of children in the region that receive free vision screenings, eye exams, and eyeglasses. 

Our program (in a Phase 2 Pilot) aims to provide same day no-cost vision screenings, eye examinations, and prescription eyeglasses to school-aged (5-18) children on-site at schools and nonprofit organizations serving primarily students from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds. 

We address critical community needs relating to vision care by providing free vision screening, eye exams, and prescription eyeglasses to children in-need. Screenings test for distance acuity, amblyopia and strabismus. Because many common vision issues at this age can be resolved with eyeglasses, a volunteer licensed eye doctor provides an on-site eye exam for children referred for further evaluation by our vision screeners. If prescribed eyeglasses, the child is able to select two frames each of their own choosing, and our on-site optician fits and measures the child for their new eyeglasses to ensure proper fit. Glasses are delivered to the screening site within two weeks. 

We have been providing high-quality vision screening for children since 1946. While we have provided this program on a limited basis at 1-2 schools annually for the past 10 years, we completed a successful Phase 1 Pilot of this program in 2018-2019, serving 11 schools/nonprofits. 

We have learned that the success of this program is largely attributed to its accessibility and convenience for low-income children and families. Typically, a child needing eyeglasses or other vision health care requires multiple visits to multiple eye professionals (optician, eye doctor). Based on doctors’ availability, the process can take weeks/months, causing parents stress as they attempt to navigate health and insurance systems, and lost income as they must take time off for such appointments. Providing on-site, no-cost vision screenings, eye exams and eyeglasses removes this burden, ensuring children access the full scope of care needed without time, financial, or transportation barriers. This program enables children to have the best possible opportunity for a lifetime of success inside and outside of the classroom. Long-term, this program fosters opportunities for children to attain higher education, and the possibility of upward economic mobility, thus positively contributing to the community as a whole. 

Support Dates: March, 2020 – Ongoing

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