Getting Glasses


Jaheim seeing the specialist. Sorry, it was dark in there and all I had was the phone.

Last summer Ms Darcel noticed an article in the paper about the Lions Club bringing some new equipment to Belize and that the Lions would be traveling to the elementary schools giving eye tests.  We are not a typical elementary school so they probably would never visit us, but it prompted Ms Candi to make a phone call to BCVI (Belize Council for the Visually Impaired).  BCVI is a non profit here in Belize dedicated to the idea that all people deserve to be able to see. It seems to have some association with the Lions Club, but I’m not sure how all that works.

Side note: Last spring when the planning team was in Belize, Wayne Carter noticed the Lions club sign and we stopped in to talk with them. They mentioned the BCVI and took us over to visit so I was aware of it. Thanks Wayne.

Near the first of September, Ms Candi called to see what arrangements we could make for examinations for our students. We brought the first group of students for eye exams on September 11. The second group came later in September, and tomorrow the last group will come.  Our staff will get eye exams tomorrow as well.  (Candi just admitted that she has never has an eye exam so it will be good for our staff as well.)

Many of our students do need glasses.  While we were at the BCVI office the students picked out their frames, the prescriptions will be ready in a couple weeks.  The glasses are supposed to cost between $40 and $120 BZE ($20 and $60 USD) but the receptionist told us that we could get them paid for by Matron Roberts (national health) so we are following up on that.

Two of our students, Jaheim and Keith, needed to see the specialist.  Keith has some deterioration of some blood vessels behind his eye and they gave his some eye drops to take every day for a while. If I understand correctly, the condition is not really repairable, but the drops will help prevent further deterioration.

I’m not sure what Jaheim’s eye problem is. We are waiting for the doctor right now in the air-conditioned waiting room. (Even in Belize, where there is air conditioning, the temperature is set ridiculously low–I’m cold and Jaheim is sitting beside me actually shivering.)

Each time one of the students has to see the specialist we must pay $20. Remember that line item we added to the budget last year for “student services?” We just spent a little of it.

I thought you might enjoy the photo below of the students from the 2nd visit mugging for the camera.


P.S. I had just finished writing this when the doctor was able to see Jaheim. He has astigmatism in both eyes, rather severe in the left eye, but good eyeglasses should correct it. Yea.

2 thoughts on “Getting Glasses

  1. Hi Dale, I just love to read your posts but I’m not on a list to follow so I forget and don’t see them in a timely fashion. Please do what you need to send them to me regularly. I’m facebook and also e-mail

    I intended to reply immediately when I saw the story about eye exams several months ago. Good visual ability is so important to studying, not to mention how enjoyable it is.

    I was 16 when my eye difficulties were discovered!! My family’s finances were limited but we always had school screenings. I don’t know how it happened but my wall-eyed state was not discovered. (Opposite and not as recognizable as cross-eyed) Each of my eyes had good vision but it took sustained muscular effort to hold focus. I had to choose between headaches from strain or fuzzy vision. When I got my first lenses with their prisms it seemed like I was seeing heaven. I had thought everybody had to work to keep things in focus. The prisms did their work and in a few years I no longer needed them but I still needed glasses.

    I hope the Belize students are enjoying and benefiting from their glasses.

    • Hi Chris,
      There should be a small button in the lower right hand corner of the screen, when you are looking at the blog, that says “follow”. It may say some other word like customize but I think that customize only comes up on my screen. Anyway, if you click on that button to follow the blog you will get an email whenever I make a new posting. Hope this helps.
      I remember when I got my first pair of glasses and realized that the trees actually had individual leaves. 🙂

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