• Ophthalmology Canada

Caps for Cataracts

Marlize Hipwell (left) and Malshi Karunatilake (right) pose with scrub caps sold in support of the Orbis fundraiser for Rohingyan refugees.

This year, the Orbis Future Vision Leaders of University of Saskatchewan partnered with University of Saskatchewan Ophthalmology Interest Group (OIG) to successfully organize a scrub cap fundraiser to support Orbis Canada and OBAT Canada’s initiative to provide cataract surgeries for Rohingya refugees in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh.

This is OIG’s first year as a student interest group and we aim to foster a culture of health advocacy among our group of aspiring ophthalmologists. At our first meeting, we had a brainstorming session on how we can contribute to local and global vision health. We all understand the importance of vision for one’s quality of life and the significant vision improvement that is provided with cataract surgeries – so we were intrigued by Orbis’ initiative. With individual scrub caps being a much-desired item among medical students, we thought that our fundraiser would be of interest to our medical school student body.

Marlize Hipwell, a fourth-year medical student at the University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine with an incredible talent for sewing and crocheting, graciously offered to support the fundraiser and single-handedly sewed all the caps! We are all grateful for her tremendous effort and dedication to supporting our initiative.

Caps were available in more than twenty different patterns and colors. The fundraiser successfully raised $375, and all proceeds were donated to Orbis Canada.

As future partners in vision care, it is important that we become advocates for patient needs in both local and global communities. We are grateful for the opportunity to provide our support for this incredible sight-saving initiative and hope to continue our efforts in the coming years!

Authors: Malshi Karunatilake (M4, USask), Laura Wu (M3, USask)