MIRI: Sarawak Oil Palm Berhad (SOPB) conducted a Vision Care Project at Rumah Anchai, Sebauh in Sabaju Estate and Rumah Osman Jau in Sepakau Estate of Sungai Asap, Belaga from Oct 29 and 29.
The two-day eye care project, a collaboration with the Ministry of Health Malaysia, and supported by International Optical Co provided free eye screening in an effort to reduce incidence of preventable blindness, especially among children and elderly folk.
Out of the 137 registered for eye screening, 78 people (30 are from Sabaju Estate and 48 from Sepakau Estate) were identified for further medical review at Klinik Sebauh and Klinik Sungai Asap on Nov 13 and 27 respectively.
“This was part of the company’s effort to grow with local communities, in this case, residents of longhouses in the vicinity of SOPB’s estates. It provides convenience and improves their quality of life,” SOPB public relations officer Enki Pati said in a press release.
The Vision Care Project established in 2013 is conducted annually to create awareness of healthy and quality living.
“It is also the intention of SOPB to lower the risk of preventable blindness, particularly among children and elderly folk in longhouses with no immediate access to medical facilities.”
Participation of the Ministry of Health through Bintulu Hospital enables more than eye check and medical review but also cataract and pterygium surgery.
Dr Kongala Reddy, head of the Opthalmology Department in Bintulu will conduct the operation in the weeks after further medical review.
Longhouse chiefs from Rumah Anchai, Rumah Osman and Penghulu Surat Asa of Long Bangan thanked the volunteers from SOPB and staff of the Ministry of Health, Malaysia for running this programme.
They thanked SOPB for absorbing the cost of the eye screening programme as well as sponsoring the spectacles, and cataract and pterygium surgeries for those with vision problems.
The Vision Care project is one of SOPB‘s corporate social responsibility (CSR) projects besides their Young Achiever Awards (YAA), Students Adoption Programme (SAP) and Education Outreach programme.