Mother Mina is forever blind but your generous support can help give a lifetime of sight to children like Yogendra and Prakash…
Please send your Christmas gift today, to help give the Miracle of Sight to children and adults in the world’s poorest places.
“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” – 2 Corinthians 9:15
Wishing you a most blessed Christmas and New Year. Your ongoing support is doing such wonderful things for families like Mina’s in Nepal and her two boys, Yogendra and Prakash.
Murray Sheard, CEO, cbm New Zealand, is the doting dad of two beautiful boys. He couldn’t bear to see the blinding disks of congenital cataracts in his sons’ eyes… and be powerless to help.
Their mother Mina has never been able to see their precious faces, because she is forever blind, through cataracts and poor-quality surgery.
Praise be to God: her sons have received gold standard surgery, thanks to the generosity and love of wonderful cbm sponsors like you.
Today, if you can, please help give the Miracle of Sight to more families like Mina and her boys. Please prayerfully consider sending a gift for sight-saving surgery. Please help break the blinding cycle of poverty and cataracts this Christmas.
Sadly, Mina really has been disadvantaged by living in poverty and with a disability. Like her boys, she was born with cataracts already starting to block her vision.
“I had cataracts,” Mina remembers. “My father took me for eye surgery when I was 12. I didn’t get proper care. I could see until I was 20, but then I gradually lost my vision.”
Mina’s world lost all clarity. Indoors: blank darkness. Outdoors: painful glare. In constant danger of falling. Permanent sight loss plunged her into deep poverty.
“I cannot work because of my eye condition. We cannot grow enough for the family. I get a small allowance which is barely enough for food. I have no other support.” You can feel her deep sadness.
Mina’s sight could have been saved by the cataract ministry you help support in Nepal, which started with a 12-bed Eye Care Centre, founded by cbm’s Dr Albrecht Hennig.
Over the years this small Eye Care Centre has become the cbm-funded Biratnagar Eye Hospital – home to an incredible 1000 operations in a day! What an impact people like you are having in the world’s poorest places!
Mina’s valley, though, was too far from the hospital in the years when she was becoming blind. But now Outreach Clinics, supported by people like you, reach far across the mountain valleys and across into India.
At last, a cbm field worker named Sima reached Mina. But after a simple eye check, Mina received some difficult news. Her eyes were beyond repair. They were damaged too badly by a doctor who, sadly, did not have enough surgical training.
Then Sima turned to Mina’s children – and immediately saw the tell-tale white disks in the brothers’ eyes.
The boys had inherited mother Mina’s cataracts.
Eight-year-old Yogendra described his life with cataracts. “Everything looks blurry. I fall often while walking. I cannot run or climb trees like my sister. Friends don’t visit anymore. I hurt myself on stinging nettles beside my house and broke my hand! I cannot go to school like other children.”
Yogendra’s cataracts were stealing his one hope of escaping deep poverty: education. Soon 4-year-old Prakash would be missing out on school too.
Mina could not see her boys’ faces. She had no idea their eyes were being blinded. The news broke her heart.
“Both my sons have cataracts in their eyes,” she wept. “I fainted after hearing that. I felt helpless. How would they survive? I have lost all hope.”
She felt so sad too. “If I could see, I might have known my children had eye trouble.”
As the boys were born with congenital cataracts, they had been losing their sight since birth. This is extremely serious, because young brains starved of sight may never be able to see very well, even if sight is restored.
Every child like Yogendra and Prakash is in a race against time. The Outreach Clinics people like you support are precious. Through examinations and urgent action, you can help give children the miracle of sight.
The mobile clinic told Mina what she needed to do to get the boys to Biratnagar Eye Hospital. Urgently.
Her heart sank even further. To Biratnagar! 900km! 24 hours by bus!
Being blind, Mina had never even stepped out of her valley. She had no money for a local bus ticket, let alone fare for 900km right across Nepal – and no possible way to pay for two boys’ general anaesthetic, surgery and hospital care.
“I want to take my boys for treatment,” Mina cried. “But I cannot afford the treatment or travel. There is nothing left!”
Mina’s heartfelt cry is the result of the cycle of poverty and disability.
For the benefit of parents like Mina and their children, please will you prayerfully consider sending your transforming gift to help give someone like Yogendra or Prakash an entire lifetime of precious sight.
Because of the generous support from people like you, Sima was able to give Mina good news she could barely believe. “You don’t need to worry about the expenses! We will arrange for your costs, through cbm!”
Because of gifts like yours, Mina and her boys were able to make the huge journey across the feet of the Himalayas, all the way to Biratnagar Eye Hospital.
This loving mother and her two young boys with fading sight were accompanied by a young relative who is training to be a nurse. But this long journey could not happen without support from wonderful people like you. Thank you for being part of our cbm family, to help transform the lives of children and adults in the world’s poorest places.
On leaving her village, and even with her relative’s support, Mina became a little anxious from all the sounds she had never heard. Traffic. Crowds. Even the hospital was loud and bustling. 1000 operations a day! Supported and made possible by your love.
Overheated, and exhausted by their trek, this special family were gently and warmly welcomed onto the ward. As a cbm supporter you know that your generous gifts help to wrap love and kindness around people on the road towards their Miracle of Sight.
A slit-lamp examination confirmed the dense cataracts in the boys’ eyes which had been growing since birth. “This loss of eye sight is severe for an 8-year-old boy,” said Sunil the ophthalmic technician.
Eye surgeon Dr Pawan is keen to get started on the boys’ surgery. He knows though, that outcomes are uncertain when children have lost their sight for so long. “Once nystagmus develops (uncontrollable eye shaking), it is very difficult. We will try. Let’s hope for the best.”
The boys were prepared for surgery. Surrounded by professional care and kindness, they were calm. Dressed in their little purple gowns they were tucked in for a good night’s sleep.
Mina was anxious but also excited for her two precious boys and slept the best she could.
The next morning is surgery day. Prakash goes first, then his older brother.
A major part of the cost of a child’s Miracle of Sight is their general anaesthetic. The two boys lay perfectly still and calm as Dr Pawan spent just 12 minutes removing their dense blinding cataracts.
Thanks to support from generous people like you, they will soon be looking through the pure, clear new lenses that this skilled surgeon is inserting into their eyes.
Outside the theatre, Mina is feeling what every parent goes through when we put our children in a surgeon’s hands.
It is really wonderful and reassuring to have locally trained surgeons performing these operations. Support from people like you is giving local doctors the chance to be finely trained in this noble vocation: the Miracle of Sight through gold standard cataract surgery.
The boys come through their surgery well. Mina is happy and relieved to receive them back, still a little sleepy from the anaesthetic, with enormous eye patches covering their eyes. They all settle in for another night at the hospital.
The next morning Nurse Kabita comes to remove the boys’ protective eye patches. Yogendra squints tightly at first, fearing his eyes won’t work if he opens them.
It’s OK, Yogendra. He looks around in wonder. “It seems he can see better now,” says Nurse Kabita with a smile.
“Yes,” Yogendra says, amazed. “I can see clearly!” He gets all his count-the-fingers tests right first time!
Kabita can now confirm: “Yogendra has good vision, he can see properly.”
When mother Mina hears this, her face beams with joy. “Thanks to God, my sons can see now.”
Dr Pawan is happy too. “Surgery went very well for both boys.”
The boys will not have perfect vision though. Their brains were robbed of sight for far too long. However, eyeglasses will make a huge improvement. They are both very excited to pick out robust frames in their favourite colours. Within hours the hospital has created perfect pairs of glasses for the two brothers.
Mina will live with very low vision for the rest of her life – but not her boys! Thanks to support like yours, the cycle of cataracts and poverty has been broken.
This Christmas, please share the Miracle of Sight with other families like Mina, Yogendra and Prakash. Your gift will help keep the cbm-funded Outreach Clinics running, to find people with avoidable blindness living in the world’s poorest places, and will help cbm-funded Eye Hospitals maintain gold standard surgery techniques to give the Miracle of Sight.
Your gift will bring Christmas joy to a mother like Mina and her precious sons.
The hospital did all they could to help her make the most of her tiny bit of remaining vision. “We will give her some techniques like using colour contrast utensils,” says optometrist Bal Chaudhary.
Mina is overwhelmed with gratitude and joy for her boys. “Both my children have had surgery. I have hope for their future now. This is no less than a miracle! I thank God. How can I thank you? I have no words!”
What a blessing. And in this case, a double blessing!! As a father of two boys, Murray is thrilled and humbled by the love and kindness of cbm supporters. Have a wonderful Christmas – and thank you for generously giving the Miracle of Sight. Please, if you can, help these miracles happen, by sending your Christmas gift for vision today.
Mother Mina could not see her children were losing their sight, because she is forever blind. The boys inherited their mothers cataracts, but support from generous people like you has broken the cycle of cataracts and poverty. Please give others the Miracle of Sight this Christmas, by sending your gift for Outreach Clinics and gold standard cataract surgery. Thank you. Wishing you and those you love a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all your friends here at cbm.