"DON'T LOSE SIGHT OF DIABETIC EYE DISEASE" - Lions Club "Knights Of The Blind"

Members of the International Association of Lions Clubs donate their time, skills and resources to raise funds for charitable giving in their communities and internationally.

In 1925, Helen Keller challenged the Lions to become "Knights of the Blind," and since then that has been their rallying cry for sight conservation projects throughout the world. The West Virginia Lions truly are "Knights of the Blind."

Ask anyone at the Appalachian Center for Vision Rehabilitation at the West Virginia University Eye Institute, the only dedicated low vision rehabilitation facility in the state.

West Virginia Lions obtained Lions Clubs International Foundation "Core-4 Program" grant funds to fully equip two new exam rooms and provide adult low vision outreach clinics throughout West Virginia.

Lions are also active in educating the public about the warning signs of diabetes and the sight-threatening complications of diabetic retinopathy, a leading cause of blindness in the United States.

The next Diabetes Education and Support Group will host a presentation by someone who is very familiar with the work of the West Virginia Lions: Dr. William Smith, Associate Professor and Director of the Appalachian Center for Vision Rehabilitation at West Virginia University Eye Institute. Dr. Smith, who specializes in low vision rehabilitation, will discuss how persons with diabetes are at risk for several eye disorders, including diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and cataracts. If you or a loved one has diabetes, don't lose sight of diabetic eye disease. If you have questions about diabetes and its potential impact on sight, or if you are already living with low vision, Dr. Smith can provide you with valuable information and resources.

The Diabetes Education and Support Group meets on the first Thursday of each month. The May meeting will take place on Thursday, May 6 at 6:00 p.m. at Minnie Hamilton Health Care Center in the education room, located in the annex (upstairs from the Mid-Ohio Valley Health Department).

There is no charge for attending the support group. Refreshments will be provided and there will be drawings for door prizes. If you have questions or need additional information, contact Mariko Hewitt, outreach coordinator, at 354-9244, ext. 235.