Vienna Eye Care Partners

Aims

Motive for an Eye-Camp

After long-standing experience with the „Plastic Surgery Camp“ in Faridpur, Bangladesh, and the positive results of this camp (1200 operations within eight years), and the organisation and cooperation, time seemed to be ripe to turn towards other health problems of the region: Eye diseases and neglected cataracts are among the greatest problems. The question arose whether it was possible to help patients, who have no financial possibilities – even if all the family contributes – to pay for eye surgery, and live in areas where there is no facility for surgery. The cost of Euro 40 for an operation is exorbitant for most of the patients.

In May 2010 Mr Shamim Haque ventured the idea of inviting an Austrian ophthalmologist, Dr. Alex Salomon, to Faridpur in order to have a look at the situation in Faridpur, contribute to possible solutions for the eye problems and to carry out a few operations for demonstration purposes. The decision was to set up an Eye Camp in analogy to the Plastic Surgery Camp.

Under the direction of Mr. Shamim Haque and the “Faridpur Welfare Foundation”, the organisation was undertaken by Mr. Haque`s brother Dr. Rontu Haque (dentist at the Eye Hospital) and Mr. Ali Asgor Manik, who has had long-standing experience with the organisation of the Plastic Surgery Camp. The medical costs were taken over by the ‘”Faridpur Welfare Foundation” provided that the doctors work in an honorary capacity and that sponsors see to the travel costs. In 2011 the Dutch Foundation covered the Austrian ophthalmologist’s travel costs.

The “Faridpur Welfare Foundation” is an organisation of the Bengali Haque family, whose aim - under the guidance of the industrialist Mr. Shamim Haque – is to offer social work for the poorest part of the population of the Faridpur region. It has been working successfully for the last nine years. In Faridpur, we are guests of Samim Haque`s and enjoy the cooperation. We have built up a deep attachment over the years.

After the first Eye Camp in 2011 it was decided to continue the initiative by carrying out further Eye Camps in Faridpur, and to establish an association for the support of the Eye Camp Project in Vienna, the “Vienna Eye Care Partners”. In the meantime, the association has been registered, an account has been opened and the first private subsidies have come in. The project was generously supported by the Korneuburg Rotary Club.