It’s easy to take perfect vision for granted and forget the very real struggle faced by millions of people worldwide – in India, we have more than 7.8 million sufferers of blindness, 4.8 million of whom could be cured through corneal transplants.
Consider what this means in real terms – imagine waking up every day, unable to complete the simplest of tasks without assistance. Imagine the vulnerability of being blind in a public space, and the level of trust you would need to place in those around you – imagine the impossibility of something as simple as correctly draping your sari, tending to the garden, following lessons at school or University or holding down any kind of job.
It is these people that the Tej Kohli Foundation and Tej Kohli Cornea Institute are dedicated to helping– our goal is to entirely eradicate corneal blindness by 2030. By keeping our focus on new technologies and using a combination of intellectual and financial resources, we believe that we can impact real change – and Amit Tiwari story reveals how.
Amit began suffering from vision impairment while still in 9th grade, causing devastation as his hopes and dreams began to collapse in the face of an uncertain future. Though Amit could somewhat navigate his house, he was unable to go out in public and found it impossible to live a normal life. He was not even able to participate in his sister’s marriage ceremonies and, after the death of his father, who would tirelessly help Amit with his studies, his future seemed hopeless.
However, with the help of the Tej Kohli Foundation and Tej Kohli Cornea Institute, who have an ongoing commitment with Niramaya Hospital where Amit was treated, Amit was able to get a corneal transplant which would otherwise have been unavailable to him, affording him the twin gifts of restored vision and hope. After fifteen years of darkness, Amit can finally see his families faces and the world around him once more, and it is the restoration of joy to Amit and those like him which inspires us at the Tej Kohli Foundation to keep doing this important work. Watch the video below to be inspired by Amit’s story.