Lions Eye Bank of New Jersey celebrates National Eye Donor Month
Sunday, March 4, 2012 • 4:49pm
The month of March has been recognized for nearly 30 years as National Eye Donor Month, in an effort to raise awareness about the importance of eye donation.
In celebration of National Eye Donor Month, the Lions Eye Bank of New Jersey will be holding a number of events throughout the area, including its inaugural Night for Sight fundraiser on March 29.
“Last year, hundreds of New Jersey residents received a second chance for sight, thanks to the generosity of eye donors and their families,” says Margaret Chaplin, the Eye Bank’s executive director. “For those in need of a cornea transplant, there is no substitute for donated eye tissue.”
Cornea transplants can treat blinding eye conditions that affect the cornea itself. These conditions often include eye injuries that result in scarring or damage to the front surface of the eye and diseases that distort the shape and clarity of the cornea. Other eye tissue can be also be recovered from a donor for use in certain kinds of reconstructive eye surgery.
The Lions Eye Bank of New Jersey also supports research into the causes of and cures for blinding eye conditions that cannot be helped through corneal transplantation.
“Our Eye and Vision Research program provides seed money grants to scientists researching a variety of vision problems,” Chaplin explains. “When consent is given by the donor or donor’s family, we can also make eye tissue available for those scientists, who desperately need it to help combat blinding eye conditions like glaucoma, macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy.”
For more information about Night for Sight and the Eye Bank’s other National Eye Donor Month events, visit www.lebnj.org.
The Lions Eye Bank of New Jersey, a subsidiary of Midwest Eye-Banks is a charitable, not-for-profit organization dedicated to the preservation and restoration of sight. It recovers, evaluates and distributes human eye tissue for transplantation. It also supports research into the causes and cures of blinding eye conditions, promotes donation awareness through public and professional education, and provides humanitarian aid to people in need of corneal transplantation throughout the world. For more information, visit the Lions Eye Bank of New Jersey online at www.lebnj.org or call 800-653-9379.