Expansion of program into St. Joseph County event held on July 18th at 10 am at Century Center Parking Lot in South Bend
Elkhart, IN – An innovative program called Kindness to Prevent Blindness that gives students the gift of sight continues to GROW in record time thanks to Boling Vision Center and The Elkhart Education Foundation (EEF). The Kindness to Prevent Blindness Program will expand from one school system and 17 schools in 2018-2019 to six school systems and 68 schools in 2019-2020. This expansion will bring the Kindness to Prevent Blindness Mobile Clinic to four public school systems in St. Joseph County. A formal expansion announcement event will be held on Thursday, July 18th, 2019, from 10:00am – 10:30am at the Southwest Corner of the Century Center Parking Lot, South Bend, Indiana. In addition to the formal announcement, brief remarks at 10am, Boling Vision Center will be providing free vision screenings to all members of the community from 9am -11am. No insurance required. This joint announcement event will be a celebration of collaboration and a testament to the impact that can be made when multiple entities work together.
Kindness to Prevent Blindness provides a medical eye exam and two pairs of prescription glasses at NO COST to all 1st, 3rd, 5th & 8th grade students that fail their state mandated vision exam. This service is provided in a one-of-a-kind mobile clinic on school property with the student receiving a custom pair of glasses before they return to class.
“What is so special about this program is that the concept is really so simple. If a student can’t see properly, they cannot reach their educational potential. In fact, 80% of what kids learn comes in through their eyes. We are unlocking the potential of a whole generation of students who in some cases had no idea that they couldn’t see. It was just their “normal”. Frankly, this program was just too good to keep to ourselves at Elkhart Community Schools. We are thrilled to partner with the United Way of St. Joseph County to serve the students of South Bend, Mishawaka and Penn-Harris-Madison and John Glen Schools. We plan to continue to expand in year three of operation to serve all students in Elkhart and St. Joseph Counties,” said Ashley Boling Molyneaux, Director, Elkhart Education Foundation.
Kindness to Prevent Blindness expects to provide over 4000 students with free glasses during the 2019-2020 school year. The expansion would not be possible without resources secured from The United Way of St. Joseph County, Beacon Community Impact Fund, Esslior Foundation, The Kelly Cares Foundation and local Lions Clubs.
Launched in September 2018, Kindness to Prevent Blindness screened and provided 2 free pairs of eye glasses to students during the 2018-2019 school year impacting more than 690 students. The mission of the Kindness to Prevent Blindness to diminish obstacles families face getting vision screenings as mandated by the Indiana Department of Education.
For the 2019-2020 school year, the Kindness to Prevent Blindness program will provide a free comprehensive eye exam and free prescription glasses to St. Joseph County public school students in 1st, 3rd, 5th, and 8th grade students that fail their state mandated vision exam. This will be in addition to bringing Kindness to Prevent Blindness to Elkhart Community Schools and Baugo Community Schools.
“Our Boling Vision Center Family is excited to announce that the Kindness to Prevent Blindness program, which has been a multi-generational dream come true for my family, will have an even greater impact in this coming school year! Starting in the Fall of 2019, we will be partnering with the public-school systems throughout St. Joe County on this important initiative to ensure that local kids are able to see their best so they can be their best,” said Hayley Boling, MBA, COE, Boling Vision Center CEO.
This massive expansion has only been made possible through the unique coordinated efforts of multiple entities: Boling Vision Center, Elkhart Education Foundation, South Bend Education Foundation, PHM Education Foundation, Mishawaka Education Foundation, John Glenn Education Foundation, United Way of St. Joseph County, South Bend Community School Corporation, PHM School Corporation, Mishawaka School Corporation, John Glen School Corporation, Beacon Community Impact, Beacon Health Services – School Health Services, Saint Joseph Health System – School Health Services, Goodwill of Michiana, EnFocus and local Lions Clubs.
About the Elkhart Education Foundation
The Elkhart Education Foundation was founded in 2014 and has distributed more than $1,000,000 back into the Elkhart schools impacting more than 12,000+ students. The Elkhart Education Foundation ignites the power of community, connects generous hearts with education, and provides the resources needed for EVERY child to excel inside and outside of the classroom through extraordinary learning experiences. They award grants for innovative teaching projects, extra-curricular activities and character building special programs to the teachers and students of Elkhart Community Schools. For more information, please visit www.OneCityOneMission.org . #OneCityOneMission
About Boling Vision Center
Boling Vision Center (BVC) has been compassionately serving the families of Michiana with a state-of-the-art, personalized eye care experience since 1960. With four locations in South Bend, Elkhart, Goshen and Notre Dame, the team at Boling Vision Center provides a high-tech, family environment where the genuine care and comfort of their patients is the highest mission.
BVC pledges to provide the finest products, facilities and services for their patients in a warm, relaxed and caring atmosphere. Boling Vision Center feels honored to have had the opportunity to serve as many as four different generations of families in their eyecare practice. From babies to seniors – patient eye health is the main focus. For more information, please visit www.bolingvisioncenter.com.