By Ben Cobb, Manager of Program and Monitoring, RestoringVision
Last week, RestoringVision attended and presented at the MAP International Partner Conference in Atlanta, GA. The conference brought together key global health organizations to meet, all sharing the same goal of serving people in need across the globe.
The conference was an opportunity to connect with many of our existing partners from our Global Access Program and meet new organizations interested in bringing vision services and eyeglasses to the people and communities they serve.
Our partners detailed stories about the impact of our programs and eyeglasses, and shared their continued commitment to eye health. MAP International generously invited us to present on RestoringVision. During the presentation, I highlighted the past, present, and future of RestoringVision, and invited new and existing partners to work with us to solve the global vision crisis, impacting more than 1 billion people.
I also shared an impact story about a woman from Guatemala who had recently lost her job knitting due to her vision deteriorating. When she received a vision screening and new pair of reading glasses, her vision, ability to work again, and quality of life was restored. This was an emotional moment for her which left me deeply inspired by our work and impact. The next day, another partner working in Guatemala shared with me that he, too, had seen that exact situation occur with RestoringVision glasses countless times and truly valued the impact of our partnership because of these very stories.
At the conference, we also met with MAP International and the local partners implementing our vision program in Burkina Faso. Both the US-based organization, ABURWA, and the local implementing partner, the Ministry of Health of Burkina Faso, attended the conference and we discussed our project in-depth. They shared photos and videos and detailed their passion and commitment to continue this impactful work.
That passion and commitment were shared by countless partners over the course of the event. This conference not only enabled RestoringVision to strengthen our existing relationships. It also opened the door to new partnerships and opportunities focused on creating equitable access to vision services and eyeglasses for the 1 billion people in need.