UKZN third-year Optometry students marked World Sight Day by providing clinical services to taxi drivers in collaboration with the Phumlani Dube foundation, the Active Citizens Movement and VW Durban.
A total of 32 students together with their general clinic co-ordinator and UKZN lecturer Dr Zamadonda Xulu-Kasaba informed the public and taxi drivers on avoidable blindness and visual impairment.
They also provided vision screening to over 300 taxi drivers and community members in an effort to raise awareness and the importance of eye health.
‘In addition to this, the clinical team provided free vision screening for driver’s licence renewal, and issued certificates to those in need. Reading glasses were also dispensed to those requiring them and cataract surgery referrals made where necessary,’ said Xulu-Kasaba.
Drivers thanked the students, saying they valued the outreach drive as many were due to renew their licences.
Others were grateful for the knowledge they had gained and for the reading glasses and referrals.
Third-year student Mr Jevon Moodley said: ‘This is just awesome,’ expressing the joy he felt about his role in examining people’s eyes and being a part of the solution.
Students Ms Nokwethemba Mpondombi and Ms Anovuyo Mapoli admitted they had never been that busy before but said it was all worth it.
Xulu-Kasaba also thanked students Mr Siyabonga Khumalo and Ms Luqmaan Khan for their assistance.
‘James Keller once said ‘a candle loses nothing by lighting another.’ Indeed, seeing my students this eager to joyfully serve and help emphasises that,’ said Xulu-Kasaba.
Words: Nombuso Dlamini