Mobile clinic is helping kids see

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Kids can start having trouble seeing at an early age. Experts say one in four school-age children deals with vision issues.

Some middle school students in Southwest Fresno got help reading the lines. The letters on a vision chart aren't so easy to see for Promise Fuller. The seventh grader has headaches and trouble seeing.

She was able to get help at a mobile clinic thanks to a $5,000 grant from Kaiser Permanente to Tzu Chi Medical Foundation. Her mother says the program was much needed.

Promise was one of 50 kids that were helped at the clinic. Gaston Middle School staff examined students beforehand with a screener and found some students needed additional care.

"I had a lot of students here that had glasses that were over two years old," said Gaston Middle School Nurse Stephanie Shinkawa. "So they really needed to be seen and have an updated eye exam and new prescription glasses."

That was all taken care of inside this mobile unit by volunteers from Tzu Chi and Kaiser.

Dr. Alex Araki conducted the exams and says he enjoys helping kids see, especially those that need it most.

"It makes me feel really good for providing care to kids that maybe aren't able to get this kind of care outside of this program," said Dr. Alex Araki.

Students got a chance to pick out their frames and the lenses were made all on site in one visit.

A majority of the students will leave with a free pair of glasses. Organizers hope this gift will help these kids see school and life much more clearly.

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