Miss Salem in­vites all to “See the fu­ture”

Serve Daily - - COMMUNITY - By Brylee Ivers for Serve Daily SALEM

— Hello! My name is Brylee Iv- ers and I am cur­rently serv­ing as Miss Sa- lem and I wanted to ed­u­cate those around me about the sig­nif­i­cance of my ser­vice plat­form based on vi­sion screen­ings and eye care aware­ness.

There are 234 mil­lion peo­ple in the world that have some kind of vi­sion im- pair­ment. These are staggering sta­tis­tics. Our eyes are the most im­por­tant of the five senses and the ma­jor­ity of peo­ple take their eyes and vi­sion for granted. Many eye dis­eases do not have any symp­toms. In fact, vi­sion prob­lems are in­vis­i­ble and of­ten times go un­de­tected. Eye doc­tors of­ten are the first health­care pro­fes­sion­als to de­tect chronic dis­eases such as: high blood pres­sure, di­a­betes, and even can­cer.

One in four school-aged chil­dren has some form of vi­sion im­pair­ment. It is es- ti­mated that 80 per­cent of the learn­ing a child does oc­curs through his or her eyes. When his or her vi­sion is not func­tion­ing prop­erly, their ed­u­ca­tion and be­hav­ior can suf­fer.

Eighty per­cent of vi­sion prob­lems world­wide are avoid­able and cur­able. Hav­ing poor vi­sion per­son­ally has af­fect- ed me since I was six years old. Not be­ing able to see with­out cor­rec­tive lenses has af­fected ev­ery as­pect of my life. This is why I feel so pas­sion­ate about this plat- form. De­tect­ing eye and vi­sion prob­lems early will im­prove a per­son’s qual­ity of life and gen­er­ally will help them live lon- ger lives.

Dur­ing my reign as Miss Salem, my plat­form has turned into a pas­sion. My plat­form is ti­tled, “Our VI­SION is to SEE the fu­ture” based on vi­sion screen­ing and eye care aware­ness.

There are four as­pects to my plat­form: • Vi­sion screen­ings: I have held a free vi­sion screen­ing for the chil­dren in Sa- lem. I part­nered with a lo­cal op­tometrist Dr. Hawkins and his team at Es­plin Eye Cen­ter, who pro­vided me with the equip- ment to con­duct the screen­ing and then re­viewed the re­sults of all of the chil­dren that were screened. • Cre­ate aware­ness and im­por­tance: This was done by pro­vid­ing valu­able eye care ed­u­ca­tion in the Salem City news­let­ter that res­i­dents re­ceive in their util­ity bill each month. I have writ­ten about topics such as how to pro­tect your eyes, dry eye, and back-to-school screen­ings. • Ed­u­ca­tion in ele­men­tary schools: I pre- sented in class­rooms about the im­por- tance of eye care and vi­sion screen­ings. • Col­lec­tion and do­na­tion of used eye- wear: I have in­vited my com­mu­nity, as well as eye cen­ters statewide. to do­nate used glasses to me and so far I have col- lected 1,857 pairs of read­ing, pre­scrip- tion, and read­ing glasses that I do­nated to Char­ity Vi­sion and the Mo­ran Eye Cen­ter to give to those in need!

To learn more about my plat­form, come to the Miss Salem pageant on April 20th at Salem Hills High School at 7 p.m. Or, you can even come watch me as I com- pete against 50+ other amaz­ing women for the ti­tle of Miss Utah! Tick­ets are an- tic­i­pated to go on sale on May 1.

Miss Salem with her eye­glass do­na­tion col­lec­tion.

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