Prevent Blindness North Carolina wins North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation Grant

(Raleigh, NC), Prevent Blindness North Carolina announced today that is has received a $25,000 Ribbon of Hope grant from the North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation to help with program improvements and broadening its Star Pupils Program.  The grant will be used to assist school systems across 18 central North Carolina counties in providing early vision screening and access to care for young children so that they can start school each day "ready to learn" and succeed. 

Janice Whitaker, Anya Helfrich and Jennifer Talbot

Through early detection and access to care, Star Pupils serves children with vision problems that often go unnoticed and untreated.  The program strives to put focus on “little eyes with big futures” by removing the barrier of poor vision for children, increasing academic success, and reducing the incidence of unnecessary vision loss. 

Jennifer Talbot, President and CEO of Prevent Blindness North Carolina stated, “I am so pleased that Prevent Blindness North Carolina was chosen as one of the North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation’s Ribbon of Hope winners so we can strengthen and expand our Star Pupils Program.  We will use this grant to roll out a new online recertification training format, develop a database of certified vision screeners, distribute best practice vision screening tools, and provide access to vouchers through a web-based application process." 

Approximately 900 school system staff and volunteers will be targeted for a new vision screening recertification workshop.  Certified screeners in the 18-county region are projected to screen approximately 100,000 children in the 2014-15 school year.  An estimated 350 children referred from screenings and in financial need will receive vouchers to secure appropriate follow-up treatment and diagnosis.    

About Prevent Blindness North Carolina

Prevent Blindness North Carolina (PBNC) was organized in 1967 as an affiliate of Prevent Blindness America, the country’s second-oldest national voluntary health organization. Prevent Blindness North Carolina (PBNC) is the state’s leading volunteer-driven nonprofit public health organization dedicated to fighting blindness, saving sight, and ensuring healthy vision for North Carolinians for their lifetime. Focused on promoting a continuum of vision care, PBNC conducts public and professional education, advocacy, certified vision screening training, community and patient service programs, research, and outreach.  PBNC serves all 100 NC counties providing direct services to over 550,000 North Carolinians annually. For more information or to make a contribution, call 800-543-7839. Or, visit us on the web at nc.preventblindness.org or facebook.com/PreventBlindnessNC.

About The North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation

The North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation is an independent self-funding 501(c)3 nonprofit organization supporting activities that help meet the educational and health needs of today's society and future generations. Since its creation in 1986, the Foundation has granted over $61 million to support North Carolina projects and programs that emphasize the understanding and application of health, science and education at all academic and professional levels. Visit the North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation at NCGSKFoundation.org and follow it @ncgskfound.

Download a copy of the North Carolina GlaxoSmithKline Foundation Grant press release.