Talking to Will and Catherine this evening, I could tell they had a tiring day! Little did I know they were dealing with an issue I created in September of last year. Glad it turned out well!
Here’s Catherine’s update:
“I started today by dousing myself head-to-toe in black coffee when our vehicle hit a road bump. It definitely woke me up. It also served as an excellent conversation starter for the duration of the day. Most of those conversations did not take place with me though. Will, being fluent in Portuguese, was kind enough to point this out to me. After all, what are colleagues for! Thanks Will! (ha)
Otherwise the morning began with meeting Dr. Arlinda Chaquisse, the National Director of Healthcare Education for the Ministry of Education. We discussed with her our successes and setbacks, as well as ways to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the program as we move forward.
Afterward, we revisited The High School of Mozambique Hero’s to conduct vision evaluations to another third of the school (this school is massive) and to retest students that GV2020 had seen in September of last year. This was no small task and Will and Nascimento spent the day barreling through without so much as stopping for a minute’s rest. While the beauty of the USee partially lies in its quickness of function, it was really incredible to see how any reservations about the process were slowly eliminated by the attentiveness and time both Will and the newly trained evaluators gave each patient.
While the reactions of students and teachers, as evidenced by photos, are quite measured – handing out the glasses to the people that had been waiting for them to arrive was another matter. What I had envisioned as methodically doling out pre-assembled glasses to a calm crowd quickly turned into complete chaos. Everyone wanted their glasses and they wanted them five minutes ago.
It wasn’t until I extracted myself from the school environment and had time to reflect on the day that I realized that, while some of this chaos was excitement, for others there was some element of anxiety – how are they to know when they’ll have another opportunity to be fitted for glasses? If they don’t receive them this time, will there be a next time?
I hope that as Global Vision 2020 continues to work with these schools, students and teachers alike will find comfort in the consistency of our presence and any lingering anxieties about the availability of quality eye care will be quelled! ”
Thanks Catherine!

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