Eye Care Charity of Mid-America (ECCOMA) is dedicated to ensuring that no child in our community fails to thrive simply because their family cannot afford glasses. Every day, our Mobile Vision Clinic (MVC) brings free eye exams and glasses to children at school – removing the barriers of access and expense that stand between too many low-income children and a bright future.
Laura Holba is a nurse in the Hazelwood School District. She schedules the MVC to visit her school at least twice a year, because the need is so great. This past year, Holba screened a kindergartener, “Logan,” who failed the in-school vision screening and was referred to ECCOMA for a comprehensive vision exam. Because Logan’s prescription was substantial, his glasses were made in a lab and sent to his school.
On the day his glasses arrived, Logan skipped into the school office with his best friend. Logan was excited to try on his new glasses. Nurse Holba put the glasses on Logan and asked him, “What do you see?”
Logan turned to his best friend, whose face he had never seen clearly, and said, “I can see you! I can really see you!” Logan was thrilled with his new ability to see clearly for the first time.
When a person’s eyesight is particularly poor, the person cannot differentiate details such as facial features. Logan did not know what his best friend looked like. Imagine the feeling of discovering for the first time what people’s faces really look like.
“The moment was funny and heartwarming, because Logan was ecstatic over something that the rest of us take for granted,” says Holba. “All kids love getting their glasses and being able to see clearly.”
In addition to helping their child see clearly, parents love the convenience offered by ECCOMA. Since the exams take place at school they don’t have to worry about taking time off from work to take their children to the optometrist. They also don’t have to worry about how to fit the expense into their budget, since the exam and glasses are provided for free.
“It’s great to hear the relief in parent’s voices when I tell them that ECCOMA will provide what is needed for their child to see clearly,” says Holba. “ECCOMA is phenomenal. They are easy to work with, the process is streamlined, and all the child has to do is come to school. We are so grateful to ECCOMA for helping our students see clearly and have a bright future!”