Thanh Nien program gives the gift of sight to needy

March 12, 2006

Thanh Nien program gives the gift of sight to needy

Some 100 vision-impaired people in the Mekong Delta’s Ben Tre province regained their sight thanks to Thanh Nien’s “Sight for Life” eye cataract operation project. Members of Ben Tre’s Doctor’s Association for the Poor Thursday carried out the free eye operations on cataract patients from Ba Tri district at the local medical center. “I am so glad, I hope that all of the patients enjoy a rich life after the sight-giving operations” said Nguyen Thi Ngoan, a 78-year-old poor patient from An Hiep commune of Ba Tri district. The cataract operations in this program were funded by Mr Le Thanh Tong, an overseas Vietnamese who has taken part in many Thanh Nien charity projects in recent years. Also on this occasion, Mr. Tong decided to donate an air-conditioner to Ba Tri Medical Center’s operating-room. He also gave 75 gifts and 4 houses for the poor in Giong Trom and Ba Tri districts of Ben Tre province, and bicycles and gifts for poor teachers and pupils at Hung Nhuong School totaling VND52.5 million (US$3,300). The “Sight for Life” charity program was launched by Thanh Nien newspaper in 2003 to help poor cataract patients regain their vision. The program has helped a total of 1,720 vision-impaired patients with funds totaling nearly VND1 billion (US$63,000). According to the latest statistics issued by the Central Eye Hospital, about 80,000 Vietnamese (0.1 percent of the population) are visually impaired by this disorder annually, but many cannot afford the now routine cataract surgery. Reported by Minh Hung

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