An eye opener for congregants

2016-02-11 06:00
 Rachel Mpahlwa gets her eyes screened by optical dispensor David Sikhutshwa during the day screening at the church.  PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

Rachel Mpahlwa gets her eyes screened by optical dispensor David Sikhutshwa during the day screening at the church. PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

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It was an eye opening day for members of St Columba Anglican Church in Gugulethu when more than 70 of them received eye screening services.

The screening took place at the church in corner of Steve Biko Drive and NY109 on Saturday.

The screening was part of a CSI project for Occuvision. Occuvision is a Bellville based eye care company that began working with the church in 2015.

They donated 15 spectacles and are hoping to increase that number this year by screening at least 4 people per month.

“The partnership began last year when one of our parishioners, David Sikhutshwa, who also works for the company, was tasked with initiating the project.

Our members were screened, tested and 15 were found to be of need for spectacles,” said Pumeza Magona.

She said that weekend’s screening was a continuation of the relationship with the company and that congregants were looking forward to it.

“Many people do not regular check-ups or go for medical testing and hardly have the money to have their eyes checked out while they were working fine.

It is only when they have a problem that they go and seek for medical help and sometimes it is too late.

With this screening it will be easier to spot early signs of problems and thanks to Occuvision they will be dealt with free of charge,” she said.

Sikhutshwa, who works as an optical dispenser for the company, said that the day was productive as 77 people were screened with 50 of them needing further tests.

He said that the company will ferry the members to their facility for the tests. He said that the day was much more than just the screening.

“We also provided information regarding eye care as many people do not have access to this information. They learnt about the basic diseases that they can have and how to spot them,” said Sikhutshwa.

He said that the relationship with the church will extend to the broader community as they were als eyeing to assist a local elderly home.

Reverend Abel Qinga said that this was noble cause and they were grateful for the assistance.

Rachel Mpahlwa, a congregant who found out that she was due for a spectacle upgrade said that she was also grateful for the training.

“I had noticed that I was struggling with my eyesight even with the glasses and this came at the right for me,” she said.

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