National Glaucoma Awareness Week
9th to 15th June 2014
Action for Sight: book an eye health check
This year’s National Glaucoma Awareness Week 2014 is urging people to take Action for Sight, and have regular eye tests, particularly if they are at an increased risk of developing glaucoma. People of African-Caribbean origin are four times more likely to develop the condition, and are more likely for it to appear earlier and for it to be more severe, when compared to people of European origin.
Early detection and treatment literally saves sight, as over 90% of individuals who are diagnosed early will retain useful sight for life. Despite such promising results, it is estimated that over 50% of cases of glaucoma remain undetected in the UK.
Awareness and regular eye health checks are critical. Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of preventable blindness. There are no early symptoms and it isn’t until the condition is fairly advanced that people recognise that there is something wrong with their vision. Once vision is lost, it cannot be recovered. A simple eye health check can pick up the condition early and treatment, which most commonly includes taking eye drops, means most people will maintain sight for life.
The IGA will be supporting the Action for Sight campaign through awareness packs which will be distributed via hospitals, opticians, and through our members and volunteers. Advertising at bus shelters in London and promotions with The Voice newspaper and Nigerian Watch newspaper and website will focus on the increased need for the African-Caribbean population to book an eye test. The campaign will also be supported by the launch of new research into general awareness and understanding of glaucoma.
For further information about the week, please write to Karen Brewer (by post or email email@example.com, or phone 01233 64 81 69.
About the International Glaucoma Association:
What is World Glaucoma Week (previously World Glaucoma Day)?
World Glaucoma Week aims to educate people about how to assess their risk for glaucoma and to be aware of the importance of regular eye exams and disease detection. It also seeks to provide support for diagnosed patients and for members of the advocacy community. Events take place all over the world.
Why was World Glaucoma Week created?
World Glaucoma Week was developed in response to the concern over the worldwide increase in the number of people with glaucoma, as the population grows and ages. More people are therefore at risk of going blind from this disease if they do not have the condition detected and treated.
Another day? Another week!!!
World Glaucoma Day has been a great success over the past two years. In many countries, having World Glaucoma Day on a weekend reduced its impact and the potential for broad community involvement. To accommodate everybody's needs and to maximise global and local awareness efforts, the WGA and WGPA decided to extend the World Glaucoma Day into a World Glaucoma Week. It will always include 12th March (the old World Glaucoma Day), but now we have the opportunity to include activities that cannot fall on that day.
This year World Glaucoma Week was 11th–17th March.
What events are organised, and where?
You can find a list of all organised events in the World Glaucoma Week website, at www.wgweek.net. You will also find other material (like multilingual World Glaucoma Week logos, posters, news releases, etc, as well as ideas for local events to be organised).
The IGA held its own awareness-raising event in County Square, Ashford, Kent, on 13th March. A number of Ashford optometrists put up posters and handed out leaflets during the week.
What can I do to help?
World Glaucoma Week is the perfect time to fundraise for the IGA.
Whether it’s a charity dinner, a dress down day or a sponsored activity, you won’t just be raising much-needed funds – you’ll also be helping to raise awareness of glaucoma. And since it’s World Glaucoma Week, you’ll have a much better chance of getting the press interested in your activities.
We’ll be happy to support you by contacting the local papers to promote what you’re doing and by providing (subject to availability):
2. Raising awareness
Anyone can organise a local event. You can register online at www.wgweek.net. You can also join an event that is organised near you, such as an educational conference or a glaucoma screening day.
Remember that you can order free glaucoma literature from us on this website.
Again, we will be more than happy to provide you with anything you need or to liaise with the press on your behalf.
Just contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like us to help.
About the World Glaucoma Association and World Glaucoma Patient Association
Both the WGA and WGPA were created to minimise visual disability from glaucoma, and to improve the lives of glaucoma patients around the world. The WGA works to optimise the quality of glaucoma science and care through communication and cooperation among national and regional Glaucoma Societies, with companies involved with glaucoma, glaucoma patient organisations and others in the glaucoma community. The WGPA works globally to encourage the establishment of and cooperation among national Glaucoma Patient Associations. The group serves as an umbrella organisation to provide useful information to individuals, health care providers and support groups that are devoted to the fight against glaucoma.
National Eye Health Week Supporter Resource Packs Out Now
Organisers of National Eye Health Week 2013 have published a series of new resources to help supporters mark the Week and promote key strategies for helping to keep Britain's eyes healthy.
Comprehensive promotional resource packs containing educational and awareness posters, leaflets, flyers, exclusive recipe cards and balloons are being mailed out to supporters this week.
Additional materials including template press releases, kids activity sheets, tips on securing media coverage and an event handbook have been published in an electronic resource centre www.visionmatters.org.uk/electronic-resource-centre
More resources and template news releases will be published in the run up to, and during, the Week itself, which starts on 16 September.
Commenting on the launch of the supporter resource materials, Francesca Marchetti, Chair of National Eye Health Week said: "This year's packs are full of valuable tools that make it easy for everyone to promote positive eye health messages during National Eye Health
Week. Our A, B, See of Good Eye Health leaflet for example, provides accessible
advice and information on a diverse range of ocular topics whilst our fabulous
new recipe cards offer mouth watering solutions for ensuring you eat a balanced
diet rich in eye-friendly nutrients."
The supporter resources have been produced with the aid of an award from the Central Fund and sponsorship from Viteyes.
Anyone who would like a copy of the resource pack can request one online at www.visionmatters.org.uk
Supporters are also being reminded to register their National Eye Health Week activity on www.visionmatters.org.uk. Events registered on the website will be promoted via the National Eye Health Week social media channels and in relevant press and media activity.
- Ends -
For further press information and images please contact:
National Eye Health Week Press Office
Direct line: 01225 423394
Notes to Editors
1) The fourth annual National Eye Health Week (16 - 22
September 2013) provides a unique opportunity for the whole ocular sector to
join forces to raise awareness of the importance of good eye health
and the need for regular sight tests for all.
2) For more information about the campaign, eye health advice and details of events and activities taking place across the UK during NEHW, including the Carrots NightWalk on Friday 20 September, visit www.visionmatters.org.uk or follow us on twitter @myvisionmatters.
3) National Eye Health Week is made possible thanks to its official supporters: Viteyes, Fight for Sight, The College of Optometrists, Central Fund and Primary Health Net.
4) Each resource pack contains green and blue balloons,
The A,B, See of Good Eye Health leaflets, A Feast for Your Eyes leaflets, Top
Tips leaflets, Recipe cards, Smoking and Vision posters, Vision Matters
posters, Falls posters, Kids Go Free posters, Wearing and Caring For Your
Contact Lenses flyers, Screen Smart flyers, Kids Go Free flyers, Family Fun Day
posters, Coffee Morning posters, Generic Event posters, Eyewear Event posters
and Carrots NightWalk flyers.