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Actress Jessica McNamee joins The Fred Hollows Foundation PDF
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Australian News
Thursday, 11 February 2010

Australian actress, Jessica McNamee, has officially joined The Fred Hollows Foundation as an Ambassador following a visit to Vietnam where she witnessed sight being restored to the blind. The Packed to the Rafters and Dancing with the Stars personality began her association with The Foundation after she raised money to help restore sight during last year's season of Dancing with the Stars.

Jess recently visited The Foundation's program work in Vietnam while on holidays in South East Asia. During her visit, she witnessed sight being restored to several patients including an 86-year old woman called Pham Thi Thong. Thong had been blinded by cataracts two years ago.

Jess escorted Thong to the eye department at Dai Loc General Hospital, which The Foundation helped build in 2007. Twenty-four hours after receiving cataract surgery, Jess removed Thong's eye patch to reveal that her sight had been fully restored.

Jess joins personalities such as Adam Spencer and Olympic gold medallist, Susie O'Neill, as an Ambassador for The Foundation. In particular, Jess will be representing The Foundation's ‘Miracle Club' - which encourages supporters to make a monthly contribution of $25, which is enough money to restore sight to a person in some of the countries where The Foundation works.

International speakers line up for Brien Holden Lecture Series PDF
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Australian News
Wednesday, 10 February 2010

The Institute of Eye Research (IER) invites all our industry colleagues to the first Brien Holden Lecture Series on Friday 26 March 2010. The Institute has named the series to honour the work of Professor Brien Holden and his more than 30 years of dedicated service to eye care education, research and development. In the last three decades, Professor Holden has inspired hundreds of graduates with his dedication to vision excellence and his entrepreneurial skills.

The lecture series will be held at the prestigious Scientia Building at the University of New South Wales (NSW) in Kensington, Sydney. Equally prestigious is the line up of international speakers and local experts to discuss vision’s latest discoveries and shine a light on the pathway to eliminating avoidable blindness.

The introduction to the lecture series and opening speech will be delivered by President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of NSW, Professor Fred Hilmer OAM. The nine speakers at the lecture series represent the cutting edge of their profession. Professor Mark Willcox, Chief Scientific Officer at IER, hopes the series will become an important platform to explore new territory in the areas of vision correction, ocular health and eye care. “The series is a unique opportunity to learn about exciting new ideas from a broad spectrum of outstanding researchers in their fields”, he said.

Registration for the lecture series is free. Registration form and more information can be found at:

Luxottica and Essilor Form Joint-Venture for the Australian and New Zealand Markets PDF
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Australian News
Tuesday, 09 February 2010

Luxottica Group and Essilor International announced yesterday that the two companies have formed a long-term joint-venture for the Australian and New Zealand markets. Under the terms of the agreement, the joint-venture will manage Eyebiz Pty Limited, Luxottica's Sydney-based optical lens finishing laboratory, which, as a result of this alliance, will be majority-controlled by Essilor.

Eyebiz will continue to supply all of Luxottica's retail optical outlets in Australia and New Zealand: OPSM, Budget Eyewear and Laubman & Pank. The Eyebiz management team will remain in place and report to the new Board, comprised of Essilor International and Luxottica representatives.

ICEE Sunnies for Sight Day - 26 Feb 2010 PDF
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Australian News
Friday, 05 February 2010

ICEE Sunnies for Sight Day, an initiative of the International Centre for Eyecare Education (ICEE), is an annual event designed for school teachers who want to teach their students about vision, eye care and how kids can join the fight against avoidable blindness.

ICEE invites teachers and children from early learning centres, primary and secondary schools across Australia to participate in ICEE Sunnies for Sight Day.

More info can be found at:

Haircut more important for kids than eye test PDF
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Australian News
Thursday, 28 January 2010

Australian parents believe having their child's hair cut is more important than an eye test in the lead-up to starting school, a survey shows.

When quizzed by eyecare provider OPSM, one in five mums and dads revealed they had never had their child's eyes tested. But the company says along with allergies and asthma, eye disorders are the most common long-term health problems experienced by youngsters.

The research also found just three per cent of respondents said an eye test was at the top of their back to school list, while seven per cent viewed a new haircut as the number one priority. And eight per cent of the 631 people surveyed considered good vision as having the biggest impact on their child's ability to do well in class.

Fred Hollows Foundation restores sight in Rwanda PDF
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Australian News
Friday, 22 January 2010

The Fred Hollows Foundation recently screened 2726 patients for cataract blindness in Rwanda and restored sight to 73.

The majority of these screenings took place at Gisenyi Eye Clinic, which is The Foundation’s base for activities in Rwanda near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo. Outreach screenings also took place at health centres in the Rubavu District, as well as in the remote districts of Ngororero and Nyabihu.

The Foundation has been working in Rwanda since 2006 - to enhance the capacity of eye health personnel and to deliver and manage eye health services.

Today, The Foundation is continuing to build infrastructure in Rwanda and provide clinics with the equipment necessary to bring adequate eye care services to some of the country’s most disadvantaged regions. Construction recently began on a new eye clinic in the Ngororero District of Rwanda which, once completed, will service a population of around 318,000 people.

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