Penticton student has an eye for helping others

South Okanagan Eye Surgeons has over 100 pairs of glasses that were collected in a box designed by a local student.

Dave Shalanski with the Penticton Lions Club

An initiative inspired by a patient, designed by a student and given a helping hand by the Penticton Lions Club is distributing pairs of eye glasses to hundreds of people around the world.

It was a patient of South Okanagan Eye Surgeons that travelled to Africa at least once a year who initially sparked the idea.

“He was the one who asked if we had any extra pairs of glasses or knew anyone who did,” Dr. Joel Post, who co-owns the practice with Dr. Carl Peters.

They have been collecting glasses for over a year and a half.

“I don’t think he’s a patient here anymore,” Post laughed. “But the idea stuck and that’s what counts.”

That was nearly two years ago and now South Okanagan Eye Surgeons has over 100 pairs of glasses that were collected in a box designed by a local student.

Andrew McKibben, a Grade 7 student at Holy Cross, is the son of Laura McKibben who is a secretary at South Okanagan Eye Surgeons. She knew her son was interested in the arts and thought it would be the perfect opportunity to collaborate.

“I struggled to find a way to put something on the box, but I decided on the glasses because I had read a book and those were on the cover and I thought that’s fun and it would be cool to put on,” Andrew said.

He designed the box featuring the iconic Groucho glasses and moustache design.

“It was great because I got to help out tons of other people,” Andrew said.

A recent connection with the Lions Club will now give the glasses a home and get them to people who need them.

“It was full, absolutely full and we didn’t know what to do with them so I did a little research and learned that the Lion’s Club will actually take them,” Laura said.

Over 100 pairs of glasses were collected and now they are sent to a Lion’s Club warehouse in Calgary where a team cleans, fixes and sanitizes them. The glasses are fixed up for a trip overseas to be put in the hands of those who need them in developing countries.

“It’s great. We haven’t had anybody collecting eye glasses, other than the Okanagan Falls Lion’s Club, in the Penticton area for a number of years,” said Dave Shalanski, with the Penticton Lion’s Club.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Penticton photographer publishes book showcasing resilience of Okanagan people

Okanagan Strong showcases the bravery of many during crisis; from COVID-19, to floods, and fires

Summerland steam train to begin operations

Reduced schedule, physical distancing planned for Kettle Valley Steam Railway beginning July 18

Summerland to hold meeting on solar project

Event on July 13 at 1 p.m. open to comments from the public

LETTER: Land for Summerland’s solar project site was designated for growth

Site represents close to 20 per cent of land marked for future growth

South Okanagan RCMP member speaks out against criticism

Police have been the subject of intense scrutiny in recent weeks

B.C. identifies 20 new COVID-19 cases, travellers specified in count

Pandemic total 3,028 cases, 51 people from outside Canada

Kelowna taxpayers could pay $90K for losses caused by cancelled Memorial Cup

$135,000 would be put aside for a potential bid for a future opportunity to host the tournament

Canadian policing organization calls for decriminalization of simple illicit drug possession

Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police want policing focus of opioid crisis to be replaced with a health one

Motorcycle rider seriously injured in collision with vehicle on Highway 97 west of Pritchard

Chase RCMP report that motorcycle was attempting to pass when crash occurred

Predator mutilated cats in Kelowna: BC SPCA

The BC SPCA confirmed a mutilated cat was killed by a predator

LETTER: Former Summerland mayors speak out on solar project

Five former Summerland mayors sign name to short letter

Emergency crews conduct CPR on unresponsive person in Okanagan Lake

West Kelowna emergency crews are on scene at the shores of Jubilee Mobile Home Park

Filing deadline in RCMP sexual-harassment class-action extended due to COVID-19

Plaintiffs now have until January 2021 to submit claims for up to $222,000

Jamie Bacon pleads guilty to charge in Surrey Six case

The plea brings an end to a complex legal case that has spanned more than a decade

Most Read