Jericho Vision Clinic in Duncans, Jamaica
A team of 6-8 persons from the U.S., including an optometrist, serve the community of Duncans (northern Jamaica) by matching visitors with prescription eyeglasses received from Lions International, determined by the use of an auto-refractor.
Jericho Vision, Duncans is an expansion of the first Jericho Vision Clinic set up in nearby Browns Town. This expansion has essentially doubled our efforts in Jamaica. This past year, we have distributed nearly 8,000 pairs of glasses. This total includes prescription lenses, readers and sunglasses. Our most recent team visited February 15-23. The team included a trained and experienced optometrist, three trained and experienced technicians, and four helpers among them. A team in Minnesota carefully labels and categorizes all of the glasses before bringing them to the island. Another team of Jamaicans, from local Methodist congregations, help with transportation, organization, and hospitality throughout the week-long event. People from all over the island visit our clinic each February. The "Jericho 1" team served 750 people in Brownstown this year, and passed out 2,000 prescription, reading and sunglasses. The "Jericho 2" team served about 600 people in the newer Duncans location, distributing 1,500 prescription, reading and sunglasses.
Each year, two teams are scheduled for Jamaica mission trips during the month of February. We are always looking for optometrists and others to join! We hope to expand our efforts to other parts of Jamaica, Haiti, and West Africa in the future.
80-year Winnifred Dawson walked to one of our clinics from the nearby town of Lawrence Park, over what even she admits are rough, nearly impassable roads, waiting 4 ½ hours for her turn.
“Reading the Bible is the most important thing in my life, and I haven’t been able to do it.” After receiving her glasses, she said, “Praise God for his continued blessings.” Then she walked home, singing, “I can see clearly now …”
Team members each pay their own way and expenses while in Jamaica. But it takes about $ 6,000 per team to cover equipment rental and insurance, shipping, and in-country fees. That’s about $2 per pair of glasses distributed. Your donation makes a big difference in people’s lives in Jamaica, many who could never afford to see an optometrist!