Making eye-care accessible
Heena lives in the slums of Park circus area adjacent to the Vision Centre of Ward 64, Kolkata. She has three elder sisters and two elder brothers. There are eight members in her family. Her mother is a house-wife and her father is a fruit seller earning USD 2 per day. Among two of her elder brothers one is a cobbler and the other one is mechanic and they together earn USD 8 per week. So the family’s monthly income is merely USD 90 which is not sufficient to support the family of eight.
Living with the condition
When Heena was three years old, her friend threw a pebble at her eye, injuring the eye and leaving her with a traumatic cataract condition. Since then she could not see things clearly through her left eye. Being very young she was unable to express her difficulties to anybody.
Sadekh is the male Community Health Worker of Ward 64 where Heena is currently staying. Sadekh conducts door-to-door visits on a regular basis for generating awareness on primary eye care among the community. It was Sadekh who identified Heena through one such visit.
The joy of vision- Looking forward
Soon after she visited the Vision Centre in January, 2013 she was referred to Susrut Hospital, Seeing is Believing implementing organization, for surgery. She was operated in the hospital in February 2013. Her vision has been restored after the successful surgery. Heena is very happy to regain her vision and she has expressed her gratitude towards the doctors and nurses of the hospital. Today,the little girl says, “I want to be a teacher when I grow up and help Abba (Heena’s father)”.