Tuesday, 03 Aug 2021
Suman’s future could go two ways
Every day, treatable conditions like cataracts are cruelly robbing children and adults of their sight. And it’s the poorest of the poor who suffer most. 90% of the 20 million people in the world who are blind from cataracts live in developing countries.
Growing up in poverty is challenging enough, but much tougher for those who lose their sight. As children they can be ignored by other children and shunned by schools that are ill-equipped to support students with disabilities. And without an education, there’s little chance of them finding a job as adults.
They can be marginalised in communities that don’t have the resources to support and encourage them. They may never marry or have families of their own. They can become trapped in a life of poverty, completely reliant on others.
This is the bleak future that could be waiting for Suman.
Once, Suman’s vision was fine. But then one day in school, she began to notice that she couldn’t read the blackboard as clearly as she once could.
As Suman’s mum, Deepa, recalls…
“One evening she returned from school and told me that she couldn’t read the letters on the blackboard.”
“She also revealed that, earlier in kindergarten, she could clearly read what the teacher wrote on the board. She was very upset.”
Deepa took her daughter to a local traditional healer who chanted words and gave Deepa some water to sprinkle on her eyes. They followed his instructions for six months, but as you can probably guess, things did not improve.
In fact, Suman’s vision only got worse. Eventually, Suman had to drop out of school altogether. She was incredibly upset at the time. And now she is utterly devastated at the prospect of not going back to school…
“I still remember the letters of the alphabet I learnt at school. I wish I could attend school again. I wish I received treatment for my blurry vision.
“I want to study and do something worthwhile for my family.”
Like any parents, Suman’s mum and dad want more than anything else in the world to help their little girl. But they simply cannot afford the cost of eye surgery and glasses.
The cost of just getting to see an ophthalmologist is beyond their means, let alone the expense of the cataract surgery Suman needs. That’s the difference CBM can make thanks to the generosity of the Australian public.
CBM works in some of the poorest places on earth and funds many thousands of sight-saving surgeries each year.
If Suman’s sight can be saved, her future can look very different too.
If she can see, she can return to school and resume her studies. She can learn to read and write, like the other children in her village.
She can run and play with them and learn the vital social skills she’ll need as an adult. She can help her family with chores around the home, just like other children help theirs.
And most important of all, she can grow up to find a good job, and build an independent life of her own, without having to rely on other people for everything.
Let’s give Suman the future she deserves.
This Miracles Day, August 19, can you give the Miracle of sight to change the life of a child like Suman? Just $33 will provide sight-saving surgery to someone living in poverty. Give a Miracle today.