About 7,000 students in 26 technical and vocational educational institutions (TVET) have received free eye screening as part of a project to provide eyeglasses to students across the country.
The €30,000 project dubbed ‘See to Learn’ and ‘See to Earn’ was initiated by VisionSpring, a social enterprise focused on improving access to eye health care, in partnership with Allianz Life Insurance Ghana, is expected to cover four regions, Greater Accra, Volta, Ashanti, and Eastern Region.
Many students who required eyeglasses received free eyeglasses after the screening.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Allianz Life Insurance Ghana, Gideon Attaraire, said the initiative was meant to bring eye care closer to students and young adults who were the future and backbone of the country.
“The power a simple pair of eyeglasses has, and the role in fixing blurry vision plays in building healthy and prosperous communities cannot be underestimated,” he said
He noted that many people in need of eyeglasses in the country were unable to afford, with only one in four of such persons getting access to them.
The Global Vice President of Programmes at VisionSpring, Anne Coolen, said research had shown that 12 per cent of women were more likely to have vision loss as compared to men, while women and girls have higher incidence of eye conditions such as myopia
In view of that she said there was the need for all stakeholders to address the critical healthcare issue relating to young women.
The programme, she said, aimed to screen over 60 per cent women and girls across the four catchment regions in the country.
“Eyeglasses are one of the most underutilised, low-cost, high-impact tools available to boost economic and social outcomes for individuals vulnerable to poverty”, she added.
The Deputy Director General of the TVET Service, David Prah, lauded VisionSpring and Allianz Life for embarking on the project, which he said, would go a long way to improve the wellbeing of the studnets and ultimately boost national development.
“TVET is the pivot of every country’s development and we are grateful that you are providing eyeglasses for reading so our TVET practitioners can focus clearly on their studies” he said.