Ro­tary pledge to help Nepalese see

Matamata Chronicle - - Your Paper, Your Place - TERESA HAT­TAN

Graeme Guil­ford wants you to give the gift of eye­sight this Christ­mas.

The Mata­mata Ro­tar­ian said if lo­cals can do­nate $25, eye surgery can give sight to a Nepalese and change their lives.

‘‘They are such a poor coun­try and they’ve had this enor­mous earth­quake,’’ Graeme said of the coun­try that means so much to him.

‘‘When we were there [in 2011] there were three sto­ried build­ings with big cracks down them. They had noth­ing and that was be­fore the quake.

‘‘They looked so un­sta­ble any-

‘‘Ev­ery­thing has fallen down and they need re­build­ing but I think you’d re­build your house a bit bet­ter if you could see.’’

way and then you get a mas­sive earth­quake. Ev­ery­thing has fallen down and they need re­build­ing but I think you’d re­build your house a bit bet­ter if you could see.’’

Non-es­sen­tial med­i­cal care like eye oper­a­tions are easy to put on the back­burner when the coun­try is suf­fer­ing so much, Graeme feels.

A lot of the world has seen the dev­as­ta­tion in Nepal and have pro­vided mil­lions of dol­lars in re­lief.

‘‘But there are still thou­sands of peo­ple that need eye oper­a­tions and if they don’t get them, they’re still blind,’’ Graeme said.

The businessman feels pas­sion­ately that this is some­thing that shouldn’t be ig­nored.

‘‘It wouldn’t hap­pen here in New Zealand,’’ he said.

Be­cause of how the Nepalese live, in huts with dirt floors and no real ven­ti­la­tion or light­ing, cook­ing over an open fire in their hut of­ten dam­ages their eyes.

‘‘Peo­ple in their 20s and 30s were go­ing cataracts.’’

But for only $25 you can change their lives, Graeme said.

With help from Ro­tary In­ter­na­tional, Ro­tary Mata­mata have re­alised there is a real need for as­sis­tance and so they have taken it upon them­selves to raise funds for this project.

Work­ing with Nepalese Ro­tary clubs, Ro­tary Mata­mata can



of en­sure ev­ery cent raised goes di­rectly to the cause.

Graeme feels a voucher which in turn gives some­one their sight back would make a great gift this Christ­mas.

‘‘For $25 you’re giv­ing some­thing amaz­ing.’’

The $25 vouch­ers can be pur­chased from Pa­per Plus and Mitre 10.

Graeme Guil­ford

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