|11/29/2019 9:02:00 AM|
Local man gets vision back with help of the Mineral Point Lions Club
|Being able to see is something many of us take for granted, but not Mineral Point resident Homer Uren, whose ability to see was partially restored to him after the Mineral Point Lions Club found and donated a CCTV low vision magnifier device to him.|
The Lions Club was approached by Patty Coogan, Uren's daughter, who was looking for information and help for her 96-year-old father. Uren lost most of his sight in one eye back in 1952 when he was fencing and part of a barbed wire went in his eye. Since then, he relied on his other eye; however, his eyesight started getting progressively and significantly worse about eight years ago. Coogan had been taking him to a doctor in Madison every month for shots in his eyes to help his vision - these visits were both costly and time-consuming. The shots were the final treatment available as glasses were no longer able to help Uren's vision. There was nothing more the doctors could do, but Coogan thought more could be done in other ways.
Coogan turned to help and was told to contact Cory Ross, a member of the Mineral Point Lions Club. Ross is also legally blind, so he could relate to Uren's plight.
The Lions Club International organization has many global causes, and according to LionsClub.org "these Global Causes present significant challenges to humanity, and we believe it's our turn to meet them." The causes include "Diabetes: We serve to reduce the prevalence of diabetes and improve quality of life for those diagnosed. Vision: We serve to prevent avoidable blindness and improve quality of life for people who are blind and visually impaired. Hunger: We serve to ensure all community members have access to nutritious foods. Environment: We serve to sustainably protect and restore our environment to improve the well-being of all communities. Childhood Cancer: We serve to help those affected by childhood cancer survive and thrive."
After talking to Ross and explaining about her father, Coogan met with the whole Lions Club during a meeting and talked about her father and what his needs were. The Lions Club was more than willing to help, and three days later a used CCTV low vision magnifier had been located by Ross and newest Lions Club member Angel Robinson - in Hollandale, only a short drive away!
The machine was bought, picked up, brought back to Uren's home for his use by the Lions Club. The organization paid for the device with the caveat that it gets donated back to the club for another's use after Uren's done with it.
The CCTV works as a large magnifier - anything placed under it is enlarged and brought up on the screen in front of you in color. With this, Uren has been able to read almost anything including newspaper, bills, family photos, and more. "That's what we're here for," Ross said. "We're here to help."
The machine has done wonders for Uren, helping life his spirits and seeing things and people he's never seen before, including his three-year-old great-granddaughter who comes to visit him. In the past, he had only been able to see her shadow, but in a touching moment explained by Ross, a photo of her was placed under the machine and was brought up in color so that Uren could see her - tears immediately flooded his eyes. "Dad loves his machine. He's like a kid with a new toy," Coogan smiled. "He uses it all the time. He can see his bills now, and he loves looking at family photos. The machine has done wonders. He can go back and look at all the photos from important life events - wedding, births, etc. He actually looks forward to reading the newspaper now!"
"They're a good bunch. They do so many good things for so many; I had no idea all the people they help." Coogan said about the Mineral Point Lions Club. "If you can't see it's pretty rough. A person doesn't realize how bad it is until you lose your eyes. They've helped Dad get his sight back."
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