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Background

Helen Keller

Helen Adams Keller was born on June 27, 1880 in Tuscumbia, Alabama. In 1882, she fell ill and was struck blind, deaf and mute. Beginning in 1887, Keller’s teacher, Anne Sullivan, helped her make tremendous progress with her ability to communicate, and Keller went on to college, graduating in 1904. In 1920, Keller helped found the ACLU. During her lifetime, she received many honors in recognition of her accomplishments. During her remarkable life, Keller stood as a powerful example of how determination, hard work, and imagination can allow an individual to triumph over adversity. By overcoming difficult conditions with a great deal of persistence, she grew into a respected and world-renowned activist who labored for the betterment of others.

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61% of the U.S. adult population had an eye examination within the past year.

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Myth: Using a computer, or video display terminal (VDT), is harmful to the eyes.

Fact: Using a VDT may strain or tire your eyes, but it is not harmful. You can get special glasses to wear at the computer to help alleviate eye strain.

Myth: If you need glasses, your eyes are not healthy.

Fact: Wearing eyeglasses has nothing to do with eye health, but with normal changes in parts of your eyes.

Myth: Wearing eyeglasses that are too strong or have the wrong prescription will damage the eyes.

Fact: Eyeglasses change the light rays that the eye receives. They do not change any part of the eye itself. Wearing glasses that are too strong or otherwise wrong for the eyes cannot harm an adult's vision, although it might result in a temporary headache.

Haghtanak Nursing Home

Following Armenia’s long, hard, cold winter the Mobile Eye Hospital emerges from hibernation (Yerevan garage) and embarks on a 10-month journey to conduct eye screenings and treat patients throughout the marzes.

Treating the vulnerable and children is a top priority of the EyeCare Project. Its first stop each year is “Haghtanak,” a nursing home in Yerevan, followed by visits to soup kitchens, more nursing homes, special schools and orphanages and a number of other local community groups and nongovernmental organizations that care for the poor and underserved, the vulnerable and disabled, families of perished fighters, war veterans and Mission Armenia beneficiaries.

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90% OF PEOPLE WHO ARE BLIND LIVE IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES WITH LOW INCOME

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Anna Hovakimyan, M.D.

Anna Hovakimyan, Chief of the Corneal-Uveitis Clinic at the Republican Eye Hospital in Yerevan, Armenia, encounters the same challenges as other working mothers worldwide. How does she balance her roles as mother, wife and physician? “With great difficulty,” Dr. Hovakimyan responds. Though her days are always filled with conflicting demands upon her time, she responds to all who need her with kindness and grace. Along with her demanding medical career, Anna and her husband, Hayk Avagyan, Chief of Orthopedics and Sports Trauma at St. Nerses the Great Hospital in Yerevan, are the parents of two active boys, Arik Avagyan, 9, and Arsen Avagyan, 5.

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