IZOTE'S NIGHT FOR SIGHT SUPPORTS EYESIGHT INITIATIVES IN EL SALVADOR
March 23, 2015 -- Izote, a local non-profit that has committed itself to supporting sustainable development projects in impoverished communities in El Salvador through literacy, health, and ecology initiatives, held its fourth Annual Volcano Rock and Roll Dinner Dance fundraiser at the Sea Cliff Manor this past Saturday night.
Saturday's event, "The Night for Sight," was devoted to Izote's efforts in El Salvador that have given thousands the opportunity to receive sight saving surgeries and other treatments. Three years ago, the organization opened an eye surgery unit at San Pedro Hospital, and a second unit at the national hospital in Sonsonate a year later, making cataract surgery available to the indigent in the impoverished Central American country.
Juan Jose Urias, who has been involved in humanitarian relief efforts to El Salvador for more than 20 years and who sits on the group's Board of Directors, introduced Izote President Risa Procton.
"We are performing 250 surgeries a year because of you," he said.
Thanking the more than 100 people who attended, Ms. Procton declared, "Izote is you guys and you guys are Izote! All of the money raised at the event will go to restoring sight - there is no overhead!"
Ms. Procton then reported on Izote's latest project that goes well beyond eyesight - expanding into other areas of healthcare. Responding to St. Pedro hospital's request for help with its ambulatory service, she said, Izote answered the call by sponsoring an Ambulatory service unit there that opened this past January. "Now thousands of people have access to ambulatory surgery from ob-gyn and orthopedics to ophthalmic surgeries, which can double the weekly cataract surgeries."
Ms. Procton offered special recognition to the Sea Cliff Glen Head Lions Club, several of whose members were in attendance Saturday night. This past fall, the group, which also has dedicated much of it service efforts to helping the visually impaired, held a fundraiser in support of Izote's efforts
Local classic rock n' roll cover band Chicken Head provided the evenings entertainment.
In addition to its health initiatives, Izote sponsors other programs that provide help to El Salvador. Through its literacy campaign the group has shipped 50,000 books to communities throughout the country helping to establish 23 school libraries, four community libraries, and, for more remote areas, 100 mini-libraries in a backpack.
On Saturday, Ms. Procton said that through its most recent Literacy Project, IZOTE has "funded a school library from soup to nuts" and will be finished in two weeks."
Also, the group has raised $10,000 in support of the Mangrove Association's Sea Turtle Conservation Project at the Bay of Jiquilisco on the Salvadoran Pacific coast where four endangered species of Sea Turtles nest. The Association purchases turtle eggs from local collectors who would have otherwise sold the eggs at market. The eggs are incubated and then after hatching, the baby turtles are released onto the beach where they enter the ocean. Through its efforts, Izote has protected 44,000 eggs.
In addition to Ms. Procton, Izote's executive board includes Vice President Louise Cooper, RN, BSN; Bryan Coakley, Esq, Treasurer; Leigh Latimer, Esq,; Beth Taboh-Bley, B.A., Administrative Director; Barbara Dubin, M.A, Secretary, Nino Luciano, Esq. and Robert Appel, M.S., Ophthalmology Project Director.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT IZOTE, GO TO THEIR WEB PAGE (CLICK HERE)
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