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Australia Helps Communities Affected by Cyclone Hudhud with Glasses

08 January 2015 PA-CN/01/01 

KINDLY NOTE: This MEDIA RELEASE is by the Australian Consulate, Chennai.

The Australian Consulate General in Chennai will provide replacement glasses for members of socio-economically disadvantaged communities who lost their glasses as a result of cyclone Hudhud in Visakhapatnam. 

People affected by cyclone Hudhud from socio-economically disadvantaged communities can have their vision screened free of cost at the out-patient department of LV Prasad Eye Institute’s GMRV campus in Vishakhapatnam. The program will provide up to 3000 free spectacles to those who lost their spectacles during cyclone Hudhud or might have developed eye disorders in its aftermath. 

The program, supported through a grant from the Australian Consulate, will be implemented by India Vision Institute (IVI) - a joint initiative of the LV Prasad Eye Institute of Hyderabad and Brien Holden Vision Institute in Sydney, Australia. 

“The scale of devastation caused by Hudhud was enormous. Good vision is fundamental to a person realising their economic potential, so helping people see clearly will ensure that they are able to rebuild their lives quickly in the aftermath of the cyclone” said Mr Sean Kelly, Australian Consul-General to South India. “I am pleased that this program supported by the Australian government will contribute to this necessary process”. 

“Cyclone Hudhud has created tremendous financial pressure on the already stretched resources for the underprivileged communities around Visakhapatnam. Provision of a free pair of spectacles will not only assist in overcoming part of the financial burden, but also make it possible for the individual to perform to his or her full potential and continue earning financially”, said Mr Vinod Daniel, CEO, IVI. 

“LV Prasad Eye Institue has collaborated with Australia for over twenty five years and I am delighted that Australia through its Direct Assistance Program (DAP) can contribute 3000 pairs of glasses to people who have lost their glasses because of Cyclone Hudhud” said Dr G N Rao, Chairman of the LV Prasad Eye Institute. 

The Australian Consulate General is also supporting IVI to conduct vision screening programs for socially disadvantaged school children around Chennai and seven cities in South India, including Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada. 

IVI is focused on supporting and promoting awareness, research, education and technological development in Indian optometry to advance capacity in vision correction and prevention of blindness. 

For further information, contact Ms Sukanya Ramanujan, Public Diplomacy Manager, at Sukanya.Ramanujan@dfat.gov.au or on + 91 44 4592 1300.