The Eye Surgeons’ Foundation, creator of the JulEYE community awareness campaign, have launched a new fundraising initiative targeted at Australian business.
Vision 500 will ask 500 Australian businesses to each commit $500 to raise $250,000 each year. The funds will fast track five innovative research projects to be undertaken by Australia’s leading medial eye research investigators.
Jacinta Spurrett, CEO of The Eye Surgeons’ Foundation (formerly known as The RANZCO Eye Foundation) said after a successful 2016 JulEYE campaign, that asked the Australian public to donate one dollar for every year they had enjoyed good eyesight, they were now hoping the Australian business sector would become involved.
“With less than 11 per cent of all research applications securing Government funding and an increasingly competitive charity space, securing donations overall is difficult,” said Ms. Spurrett. “To this end, we are asking Australian businesses for the first time to also help us make a difference.”
we are asking Australian businesses for the first time to also help us make a difference
Companies and businesses that donate to Vision 500 will join an impressive group of like-minded people and organisations that are passionate about making a difference. Legal and advisory firm Ash St was the first organisation to come on board alongside other Founding Members Hunter Health and Ezypay.
Chair of The Eye Surgeons’ Foundation Peter Keel said he wanted his legal and advisory firm to lead the way in contributing to eye saving research by becoming a Founding Member of the Vision 500 program.
“When Ash Street first heard of the collaborative giving initiative Vision 500, we knew we needed to be a part of it,” Mr. Keel said.
Vision loss costs the Australian economy an estimated $16.6 billion in 2009, with $2.98 billion attributed to the health system, $2.28 billion to productivity losses and $9.4 billion to loss of wellbeing. Since then, the need for answers in terms of prognosis, treatment and cures for eye disease such as macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma and cataract remains a top priority to help change the way Australians see the world and improve their quality of life.
“The Eye Surgeons’ Foundation, in partnership with the Ophthalmic Research Institute of Australia, has supported more than 200 eye research programs since its inception,” said Ms. Spurrett. “One such grant seed-funded the discovery of new genes linked to glaucoma, shedding light on the causes, treatment and management of rare eye diseases so we know as a Foundation by supporting the innovative and inspirational work of Australia’s visionary researchers we can impact vision loss of individuals, families and communities. Now we are looking to Australian businesses to share that vision and join us in creating a future without blindness.”