From left: Manager Special Projects Russell Juriansz, Executive Director Samantha Liyanawaduge, Assistant Manager CSR Sajeeth Ilyas, Manager Eye Care Centre Ajitha de Alwis
Continuing the ‘Eyes of Hope’ project from last year, Expolanka Holdings facilitated 25 cataract surgeries free of charge bringing the number of patients the Group has supported to 50. Planned and executed to fall in line with the ‘World Sight Day’ the surgeries were conducted following a series of free healthcare clinics that assisted over 300 senior citizens to determine the necessary course of actions for their health complaints. Expolanka CSR selected the candidates for cataract surgeries during these free healthcare clinic which were held in Maskeliya, Sedawatta, Homagama and Wattala areas to celebrate the ‘World Elders Day’ in collaboration with HelpAge. In addition to this, the Group donated spectacles to a number of patients.
Commenting on the program Head of Marketing, Corporate Communications and CSR Paddy Weerasekera said, “World Sight Day is a great communication opportunity to create discussions about eye health issues and encourage responsible entities to lend a hand to those without adequate resources to take care of their eye care problems. Since last year, we’ve been taking the initiative to play our part in this important issue.”
According to a WHO (World Health Organization) report ‘80% of visual impairment including blindness is avoidable. The two main causes of visual impairment in the world are uncorrected refractive errors (42%) and cataract (33%). Cost-effective interventions to reduce the burden of both conditions exist in all countries.’ “In our various efforts to help senior citizens of Sri Lanka we noticed that a number of these individuals are forced to live with ailments such as cataract due to lack of proper resources and funds. Therefore, we decided to combine two programs and help address this issue within our capacity as a corporate citizen,” Weerasekera added.
Expolanka’s CSR arm conducts various CSR activities throughout the year with focus on five areas namely, healthcare, education, environment, community development and disaster relief. Expolanka CSR projects cover a number of social needs in the country and thus establish Expolanka as a corporate citizen working for a better tomorrow.
As part of the healthcare initiatives, Expolanka facilitates an ongoing chain of affordable medical clinics dubbed ‘Expo Medix’ to provide free medical consultation and subsidised drugs to patients.