Pete’s Story

When Pete passed his physical exam to get his trucking...

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Pete’s Story

When Pete passed his physical exam to get his trucking license back, it was like a Christmas miracle to him. “Driving truck is like having a house for me. I work, sleep and live in a truck,” the 40-year-old says.

That’s why when Pete lost his license due to poor eyesight, he found himself on the streets of Vancouver. After making the trek back to Winnipeg to find employment, Pete landed at the drop-in centre at Siloam.

Unable to find work, he desperately started looking for an affordable way to get his eyes checked and get a pair of glasses.

Pete is one of many in the same predicament.

More than half of Siloam’s guests struggle with poor eyesight, and access to affordable eye care in the inner city is meager; the need is far greater than the supply.

To plug the crucial health gap in the community, Siloam’s Saul Sair Health Centre recently opened up an optometry clinic for guests to get their eyes checked up and taken care of – completely free of charge.

Thanks to the tireless work and advocacy by Winnipeg optometrist Dr. Luke Small, a $20,000 donation from The Cardinal Foundation and a $15,000 donation from INNOVAMED, Dr. Small saw the first patients in September in the newly outfitted clinic.

Pete was one of the first to sign up. He was promptly outfitted with a fresh pair of glasses donated by Pearle Vision, who will be providing glasses free of charge to those who need them.

“I don’t really know how to describe it,” Pete said in mid-November, the day he got his trucking license back. “I can see clearly now.”

For now, the clinic will only be open once a month as there are not enough optometrist volunteers to meet the need.

If you’re optometrist and would like to help out, please contact us at 204.956.4344.

 

Disclaimer: To protect the privacy and trust of those in our community, we do not publish their photos or names on our website. Photos in this section are stock photos, and names have been changed.

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