sharing the vision with the world

Malekhu / Beni Ghat, Nepal @ Mar 18th, 2018

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To All of You Coming Along from now on.

The 12th OWNDAYS Eye Camp was held in Nepal. It was the third time an eye camp was help in the country.

The weather on the day of the OWNDAYS Eye Camp seemed fine. It was a little chilly at 7 in the morning and the crew set off for their mission with the car packed with prescription glasses and toys. The distribution venue this time was a town called Malekhu, situated within the mountains and approximately an hour’s drive from the capital city of Kathmandu.

The scenery outside the car gradually turned from bustling streets to rocky paths as we headed towards Malekhu. Before we realised it, we were driving in the midst of high mountainous terrains which made us go weak at the knees although we must admit that the view was breath-taking. After a rocky ride, we finally reached our destination, a small hospital where we would be distributing the prescription glasses.

The local people came to greet us as we entered the hospital. After exchanging greetings, we proceeded to distribute the glasses. The local people seemed a little nervous at first as they were not used to having visitors. However, we could not help but notice their big, wide smiles when we handed over the glasses and adjusted the fitting of the glasses for them.

Although language barrier made it almost impossible to talk to the local people, they communicated their joy of receiving the glasses with their smiles and body language and that was all we needed to get rid of the fatigue we had after a long journey.

Enjoying good, clear vision is something you and I often take for granted. However, there are actually many people in the world who face limited access to prescription glasses as a result of economic constraints. In places like Malekhu, one can hardly find any optical shop.

The people who received our glasses this eye camp make up only a small number out of those in need of vision aid. There is still a long way to go to enrich the lives of all people in the world.

After the eyeglass distribution, we said goodbye to the local people reluctantly and headed to the primary school in Beni Ghat. It was an arduous journey having to drive through badly maintained roads with uneven surface and large puddles of water collected on the road surface.

We reached the school after two hours’ drive. Many children were there waiting for us. As soon as we got out of the car, the children greeted us in a loud, cheerful “Namaste!” with their hands placed together in front of the chest. We noticed many of them in worn-out clothes and were barefooted.

We were told the children spent two hours travelling on foot to come for the distribution event. Our hearts grew heavy upon learning that the children had to walk through those rutted paths on their bare feet or with only broken sandals.

We gathered the children up in a classroom and handed out OWNDAYS notebooks and pens to them. The children outside were peeking into the classroom and occasionally flashing naughty smiles, perhaps eyeing the toys spread out on the tables.

We gave the children footballs, badminton sets, crayons, board games and picture books titled Poupelle of Chimney Town by Nishino Akihiro. The children were engrossed in the picture book, their eyes twinkling with awe as they turned the pages. Before we left, we took pictures with the children and did the OWNDAYS cheer “Yeah! Yeah! OWNDAYS!!” with them.

Through this OWNDAYS Eye Camp, we have learnt the importance of giving back to the society. We will continue to enrich the lives of others by dedicating a portion of our global profits to provide prescription glasses to the people in need. Being involved in the foreground of the eye camp is, to us, a strong reinforcement on the significance of our daily work and how it contributes to the society.

As we visit local communities and hand out glasses to the needy people in person, we hope to create a world that looks beautiful to the people around us.

The OWNDAYS Eye Camp is not merely a one-time project but a long-term, continuous effort we do in hope of enriching the lives of others. To this end, we will continue to travel across borders and help people see a beautiful world through OWNDAYS glasses.

OWNDAYS Eye Camp Executive Committee