Patient Stories


Thanks to sight-saving cataract surgery, Louro can go back to providing for his family.

Louro is a 75 year old painter and woodcutter from a village near Kerema, Papua New Guinea. As the sole breadwinner of the family, he worked hard to support his wife and 10 children. But in 2021, an unfortunate accident at work led to a life-changing event. Paint splashed into his eyes, causing a cataract to develop in one of them.

Louro stopped working at his second business as a woodcutter because he didn’t want to risk getting a chip in his one good eye and making himself totally blind. But he pushed himself to continue working as a painter, despite the growing blur in his vision, so he could provide for his family.

As Louro’s sight worsened, his son Michael stepped in to fill his father's shoes. He helped his father with food, money, and would often need to lead him where he needed to go.

"He's not a person who stays home," Michael said, reflecting on his father's active life before the cataract.

In remote Kerema where we met Louro, access to healthcare, especially eye care, is limited. The challenges are numerous: geographical isolation, lack of facilities, and a shortage of trained medical personnel. Most families in Kerema, predominantly fishermen and subsistence farmers, seldom travel beyond the town. Recognising this need, our team in Papua New Guinea organised a surgical outreach to Kerema, aiming to bring critical eye care to this region for the first time.

The Outreach Team's arrival at Kerema Provincial Hospital was a beacon of hope for many, Louro included. Despite his uncertainty about the surgery, Louro underwent the procedure. When his bandage was able to be removed post-surgery, his world changed – he could see clearly again! Overjoyed, he expressed his gratitude: “Thank you! To the doctors and to all of you!”

His son Michael was also so relieved when he found out. “When his eyes were good, he was the only one that went to the bush to find food. Then he had to stop,” Michael recalled. Now, with his sight restored, Louro was ready to go back to work and caring for himself and his family.

Louro’s story underscores the impact our supporters make - restoring not just sight, but the ability to provide for a family. Your generosity enables us to reach more people, ensuring that everyone has a chance to access life-changing eye care.


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