Denis (pronounced Denise) is a 14-year-old local middle school student. She is bright and vibrant with curious brown eyes and an engaging personality. Her smile lights up a room.
Denis loves to read. She is a devoted student and dreams of going to college. She wants to be a pediatrician, a veterinarian, a musician or a lawyer. And she wants to get married and have children, too!
For a 14-year-old the future should be overflowing with opportunity.
Denis, however, faced a threatening obstacle at age 11 when she began having trouble with her vision. She started losing her place while reading because her vision got blurry. She couldn’t see well close up or far away. The Sunshine and bright lights hurt her eyes. She couldn’t read street signs or restaurant menus. Schoolwork was the most difficult. “I would ask teachers for permission to move to the front of the class. I was frustrated when the school became difficult. I began to squint to see better. I loved to read and couldn’t read because my eyes would get extremely tired and watery.”
With no insurance to see an eye doctor Denis instead attended a non-profit fair at Chaparral High School. Her vision was tested, she selected a frame and glasses were ready in an hour. They provided her with some relief for a year, but soon after they had no effect.
Denis struggled through the next two years of school. Her family knew she was having trouble, but the cost of a medical eye examination, possible medication, and new eye glasses was overwhelming.
It was at this time Kim Zambon, a kind former teacher and mentor to Denis, intervened.
She contacted Vision Recovery Center Vice President Lisa Federico for assistance.
Denis was immediately scheduled for a full medical examination of her eyes with Federico’s affiliate optometrist, Dr. David Yesnick of Yesnick Low Vision Center. Following a diagnosis of some common but not previously treated disorders, Denis was prescribed a new prescription and fitted with brand new glasses.
A week later Denis reported she was seeing clearly. “I have noticed a change in my vision. Now I can see at a distance and close up. It has been such a relief to know that my glasses have made a difference in my life. The fact that I can see things better at a distance whenever I go out or go to school – it makes me very happy. I am so grateful to the Vision Recovery Center, Ms. Federico, and Dr. Yesnick.”
Denis’ parents also expressed their sincere gratitude. “We are giving thanks to this wonderful organization for the help that you have given Denis. Thanks to you she can see better and she has been progressing in all aspects. Thank you for the glasses that you gave to her because now she can read for longer periods of time and her eyes will not get tired. We thank you very much for your help.”
Federico reports she continues to follow Denis’ progress and is encouraged a note from Dr. Yesnick to her school has been instrumental in making some constructive classroom setting changes conducive to the vision health of every student. “In particular, classroom iPad glare and brightness for students impacted by compromised vision, low vision, and light sensitivity are now being addressed as more and more ‘Medical Necessity’ letters are being sent to teachers, principals, and school boards.”
Today Denis’ smile continues to light up a room. She exudes confidence beyond her age, a willingness to learn and a desire to help those less fortunate. Wise beyond her years and destined to make a difference herself, Denis said to Federico … “It is extremely important because when you can see it makes a difference.”
Watching her leave the clinic with renewed hope to see perfectly again gave the Vision Recovery Center team a great feeling of accomplishment knowing Denis was back on the road to success!
Make a difference for these students and send your tax deductible donation today to:
Vision Recovery Center
9191 West Flamingo Road, Suite 120
Las Vegas, NV 89147