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As a small example of what your generosity meant in 2012, we want to share with you the story of the cataract surgeries we did in December: the gift of sight. As for 2013, stay tuned – so far, Health In Harmony has already launched a new look to our website including a new blog to keep you – our community – more involved and connected.
And so, as we come cross the threshold of 2013, we’re honored to share with you how the priceless gift of sight was shared with 50 individuals over the course of one week at program partner ASRI. Enjoy the story in pictures by photographer Katie Holmes, and impressions from the day from founder and president, Kinari Webb:
"I wish you could all be here this week. This week more than any other is such a joy. The wonderful ophthalmology team did 74 surgeries... This morning we got to take off the bandages…one wonderful lady, a traditional healer who does both massage and delivery of babies, was nearly completely blind. People came to get her and guided her to their house. Now she can see so well that she kept answering for the other patients who were being screened and delightedly calling out the number of fingers that were being held up. Another patient was happily joking with her that now she would be sure to massage the right part of the body. She was indignant and said, "Even when I was blind, I could deliver a baby, and always knew where I was massaging" I smiled, and said, "Yes, but now it might be a little safer." She laughed and admitted that was probably true.
There was one 70 year old man that when I took off his bandages, I was the first thing he had seen in two years and he just couldn't stop smiling at me and telling me how beautiful I am. I think he fell in love. I guess in comparison to nothing I look pretty good.
When I asked another man what he wanted to do now that he could see again for the first time in a year, his response was immediate. “I want to go home and kiss my wife. I haven’t seen her face in so long!”
One patient had been blind for seven years. When we asked him why he hadn’t come to any of our previous surgeries he said that he lived in a very remote place and hadn’t known about them because he was never able to leave the house. When we asked how he found out this time, he told us that one of our new forest guardians had come to his house to tell him about it. He was so excited that now he would be able to work and take care of himself.
Thank you to all of you for helping make this happen!