“My eyesight was really bad. I couldn’t see anything…” Nargila said. “It was like looking through a yellow cloud. I fell down many times… and I didn’t have the means to travel to Yerevan for surgery.”
Sadly, Armenians have learned to accept blindness as a part of growing older because they have limited access to eye care. Just one out of four who need cataract surgery have access to care. By 2050, that number will more than double as the population begins to age and life expectancy increases.
It takes nearly two years for the Mobile Eye Hospital to make a full rotation throughout Armenia so Nargila was thrilled when the medical team arrived in her village of Ijevan. She was finally able to receive the cataract surgery she needed.
“I was astounded when I started to see again… I was so happy I didn’t know what to do,” Nargila said. “Now that I can see, I enjoy everything — trees, flowers, people, my chickens and my grandchildren.”
Above all, she expresses gratitude for those who made her surgery possible.
“I’m truly grateful for the doctors and donors,” Nargila said. “Without them, I would be sitting here blind.”