By Vivian Onyebukwa
Lions Club is known throughout the world for its efforts at improving the lives of visually impaired and prevent avoidable blindness among other other projects.
In line with this, the Lions Club of Akowonjo, Lagos organised a vision project in collaboration with a Non Governmental Organisation known as Kawe, and Lagos Business School MBA Class of 10. Kawe is a social enterprise aimed at encouraging and inculcating the reading culture especially in young people founded by Segun Dada.
The project is an intervention targeted at addressing the deficiencies, which hinder the academic performance of students. This initiative underscores the importance of effective collaboration in service.
The project titled “Vision”, took place at Oke-Odo Junior High School, Oke Odo for the students of the school. 100 of the children were screened, while 64 of them will get eye glasses through the exercise.
The President of the Lions Club, Akowonjo, Ibiba Odili, in her welcome address, described the event as unique because of the collaboration with other groups. Explaining the reason behind the project, Odili said, “Según helps in development of schools, he provides books and all that. So he asked me what he could do for me. That’s how the collaboration started. We discovered that most students are not doing well in class not because they are not brilliant, but because they don’t see well and then their parents have no money to provide eye glasses for them. The collaboration is significant because it underscore the importance of collaboration. I look forward to carrying out this project with Segun beyond Akowonjo.
District Governor, 40481 Lynda Odunmbaku while speaking, was overwhelmed with joy over the project. “I am pleasantly surprised and impressed by the president’s intention to bring the vision exercise to schools. It is customary for us to overlook children and face the adults as most clubs do. So it is a dimension that I buy into because I am a mother and school principal. There are many children that can be traced to vision impaired”.
Odunmbaku advised that early detection is key as it can be permanently corrected or managed. She applauded Segun for the initiative, while expecting more coloration with him in future for the club. .
She told the children that everybody is a volunteer whether you a Lion or not.
In his response, Segun stated that his organisation encourages the students to read by establishing libraries in schools. He declared that this is only the beginning, and advised, “If you are forcing a child to read and the child has eye problem, you need to fix that first. These days so much light is going into the eyes because of phones”.
In appreciation of Lions Club gesture to the school, the school principal, Oladokun Bernice Olusola, said she was overwhelmed for the organisation to use her school for the project, and promised to ensure that the students make good use of the glasses. “I am highly impressed. I promise that those glasses will not be misused. We will give them orientation on how to handle and take care of the glasses. I promise that those students given the glasses will take good care of them.
During the event, Según and the school principal were decorated with Lions badge.