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Tamale Progress Lions Club organizes eye screening and donation of free glasses

The Tamale Progress Lions Club in partnership with the Legon Lions Club in Accra have organized a free eye screening exercise and donation of free glasses to the public.

The event took place at the premises of Diamond FM at Nkrumah Voli Ni on the Industrial Area road in Tamale on Saturday, 21st October, 2023.

The Tamale Progress Lions Club and Diamond FM collaboration is the first edition and is part of  the sight awareness campaigns for the month of October which coincided with the annual Diamond FM Damba Festival celebration.

A total of 120 people were screened successfully by the medical team from the Tamale Teaching Hospital (TTH) Eye Clinic. Out of this number, 83 persons received free glasses based on their screening results and the eye condition they had been diagnosed.

Speaking to at the end of the event, Mr. Umar Abubakari, a member of the Tamale Progress Lions Club explained the rationale for the exercise and was happy that they had exceeded their target for the event and called on well-meaning persons and organizations to support their activities to enable them continue to impact the society. 

“Lions Club as mentioned is a humanitarian association or services inclined, we do apart from the blind we do that of the needy and poor people in our society. We also do a whole lot of communal activities and any other thing that you can think of that humanitarian service can touch. Currently as we speak, our lions are mobilizing to touch the hearts of the people of Akosombo and that of Eastern Region territories for the flooding case. So we are also involved into this and we are mobilizing support in medical and all other support.” He said.

Mr Umar Abubakari, Tamale Progress Lions Club

He added that, “So our target for today was 100people but I think it is like we have gotten more than 100 people and as you can see more people are still coming. This is just a phase and Insha Allah, God willing we have a plan to do other phases and we will discuss with Diamond FM in particular on where.”

For her part, a member of the medical team from the TTH, Hajia Ayisha Mohammed impressed on  the Tamale Progress Lions Club to try and add medications to their free glasses next time they are to undertake this exercise. She said this was necessary to ensure that those who cannot afford the medications that are prescribed for their condition after the screening are served too.

“This is our second time of having this screening exercise with lions club and some people have benefitted a lot. The last time, the crowd was bigger than this and they benefitted a lot and this time around they have benefitted a lot because most of the people who came were able to get the glasses they want. We have gotten some of the patients who need further treatment and we have referred them to Tamale Teaching Hospital.” She said.

Hajia Ayisha Mohammed added that, “I recommend that next year when they are coming back it should be more greater than this one. The difficulties may be we will have is that maybe we should have had drugs for some who cannot afford because some of them actually cannot afford. And looking at them it is only the spectacles that we have. Then some are there the spectacles they may not need it so it is like if they don’t need it we should have something they can go home with for their coming but that wasn’t there. So that is the only challenge we have. I will commend them (Tamale Progress Lions Club) for the good work they are doing and I wish and hope that next year if they are coming they should include medication to some of the patients that came, they should continue the programme.”

An Ophthalmic Nurse at the TTH, Mr. Abdul Ganiew Sualihu also thanked the Tamale Progress Lions Club for joining hands with them to carry out the exercise and asked the general public to take advantage of such since it is coming at no cost. He also indicated that this idea was in line with the Sight Awareness Campaigns which is marked on the second Thursday of October every year and thanked Tamale Progress Lions Club for the initiative while also urging other well-to-do individuals and organizations in society to emulate them.   

“This morning when we came we expected many people; in fact we wanted to see over thousand people but when we came the number wasn’t that bad and we started. At least we have been able to see most of them now and some who needed glasses have been given, others who needed drugs have also been given at a fee.” He said.

He further added that, “Going forward, I think this is a very great thing that they have done and we can’t thank them enough. We urge them to do this quarterly going forward.”

The Tamale Progress Lions Club has undertaken several community help projects over the years in areas such as voluntary cleaning exercises in various communities and other health related initiatives.

Some prominent members of the club include, Mr. Iddrisu Abdul Rashid, a former General Manager of Diamond FM and Chief Executive Officer of Tuma Prestige, Hajia Salat Abubakari, Regional Nutrition Officer at the Ministry of Agriculture-Northern Region, Alhaj Alidu Ibrahim, a retired banker and consultant, Mr. Abu Najah, Tamale Technical University Administration and Mr. Issahaku Abdul Gafaru, a construction consultant among others.   

Some of the beneficiaries who spoke to Diamond News/ were full of praise for the Tamale Progress Lions Club and urged other benevolent organizations to emulate their gesture as a form of service to the community and the society at large.

A section of the crowd that turned up for the eye screening

For her part, a participant, Abukari Haliya said, “I came for this eye screening because what I am encountering is that I cannot see from afar with my eyes so I came to seek for the doctor’s advice and to go through the process and get what can be done.”

She added that, “What they detected with my eyes is that they said they couldn’t find my spectacles so they told me to come to TTH for them to prescribe it for me. I want to thank the organizers for the hard work that they have been doing and the kind of help that they have been giving to people for the sake of God. God should help them to do whatever they want.”

Another participant, Azara said that, “I saw the notice on social media and I came here for the eye screening and the experience was awesome…the workers there acted professionally to everybody and the process was smooth and everything went well.”

She again added that, “As I have gone through the screening and everything but what happened is that I need a special glasses so they took my contact and said in a week I can reach out to them and they will find the necessary medication and glasses for me.”

“I want to say a very big thank you to Tamale Progress Lions Club for such a great opportunity. I have been having this eye issue for almost three years now and I have been going for treatment and it is not really really affordable, it is very expensive. So doing this for the people for free is a very great opportunity, so thank you to them for giving in such initiative and God will bless them for that.” She concluded.

 A total of 120 people successfully went through the screening with 83 people getting free glasses that matched their screening diagnoses.  

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