Clinic Blog: 2011 Fishkill 1 Clinic Blog
July 15, 2011
Today is bittersweet as we complete our last day of clinic in Fishkill, NY. As part of tradition, we arrived in our bright yellow Fresh Air Fund shirts. We started our day congratulating Dr. Mita as she is officially a member of the OneSight Doctor Panel! Mita has and will continue to do great things for deserving people! We spent the day at Camp Tommy where we screened about 130 campers and staff and provided 56 exams. Yesterday we were at Camp Hayden Marks. We screened 243 campers, examined 53 and made 50 pair of glasses – all with 1.50 doctors! We were rewarded for our hard work last night with Cold Stone Creamery.
Yesterday we had a lot of help from Seiko and The Macy Consortium! All of our volunteers did a great job screening as we only examined 20% of the campers. It was fun having a group of volunteers that were so eager to experience each part of the clinic. It was also great to share stories with them about what makes us so passionate about OneSight.
We had a great evening enjoying each other’s company as we grew nostalgic about the last two weeks. Emotions are running high as we realize the friendships that we have made and will have to leave in the morning. At least we have Facebook to keep us connected! This evening we will attend our closing ceremony around a campfire. I anticipate that the entire team will be a complete wreck as we recognize each other for our hard work during the clinic.
Quote of the Day:
“Which camp village are you from Avalanche or Lakeside?”
“I’m from the Bronx!”
July 13, 2011
Today we spent our time at Camp ABC where we screened about 250 campers and counselors. Of those 250, 109 ventured onto EyeLeen for an exam and glasses. The lab was busy manufacturing 63 pair of glasses and prepared 44 more pair to be made by EyeVan.
We had volunteers from Seiko and Luxottica Wholesale who helped us with the masses! Again, today was not short on entertainment. At the registration table we were serenaded by the campers. We heard everything from Drake to camp cheers and prayers. Most of the campers we saw today wanted glasses whether they needed them or not. There were a few fearful girls. At one point a camper spotted her friend on her way to EyeLeen when she screamed in a sad voice, “Oh no! You need glasses?! I’m so sorry!” You would have thought that she would never see her again! It was great to hear how ecstatic most kids were to pick new frames and how they loved their glasses from last year. The most rewarding part of our day was after dinner when the campers thanked us in unison followed by enthusiastic cheers!
After our busiest day yet, we deep cleaned EyeLeen and prepared her for another day tomorrow. In the morning we will drive up to Camp Hayden Marks where we expect to see about 220 more campers! Good night EyeLeen.
Quote of the Day:
“What are you making me read? Chinese?!”
(In reference to Dr. Mita’s eye chart)
July 12, 2011
Today we were back at Hidden Valley and had more help from our partners at Topcon. They helped us out in registration, pre-screening, and frame selection. We pre-screened 140 kids today and Dr Mita saw over 50 of them as the sole doctor with us today!
Mike and Rupe both made their first pair of glasses from beginning to end. In order to convince one of the campers to do the NCT Crys had to ‘shoot’ Jeremiah six times in the eye with the tonometer. Jeremiah took one for the team because it worked!
I enjoyed working the front of the van, where I greeted the campers and got them ready for Dr. Mita. While we waited I had the opportunity to talk with the campers! I found that there were a lot of kids that had never had an eye exam before. It was fun to explain what to expect during the exam. One of the campers was very excited to know that she was going to be able to see at school! Perhaps the most humorous encounter I had was a girl who was asking about the vision van she was on last year, SeeMore. I was explaining to her that all of the vision vans names are related to optics. It was hilarious watching her face as she understood EyeLeen, SeeMore, Iris, EyeVan. Our last encounter at camp for the day was at ABC when we parked EyeLeen. A counselor approached Dawn and asked where SeeMore was. Dawn told her that SeeMore was resting peacefully. She was alarmed and said “not Rest In Peace peacefully, right?!” Dawn promised to email her pictures so that she could see his smiling face anytime!
A special thanks to camp counselors Kyle, Kevin, Sarah, Jules, & Sam for guiding us through the high ropes course this evening! We all had a great time – even though some of us were very far outside of our comfort zone. We had three activities – all about twenty five feet off of the ground. The first was the catwalk - a horizontal log between two trees that we had to cross with no assistance. The second was ships passing in the night - a wire where two of us started at opposite ends and had to cross to the other side (passing each other along the way). The final challenge was the leap of faith - a single pole that we had to climb up, stand on top, and then jump off and try to grab a trapeze. Anne, Jeremiah, & Matt were the only ones able to get to the very top.
Tomorrow we will be back at Camp ABC where we expect to see 220 campers. Goodnight EyeLeen.
Quote of the Day:
“So does this shoot you in the eye?”
“Bring it, dude. Bring it.”
July 11, 2011
We started week two strong amidst the mountains at Camp Mariah. Today we screened 150 campers, provided 71 exams and made 68 pair of glasses. Our biggest compliment of the trip came from a camper who was very impressed with EyeLeen. “Wow! This is a lot nicer than last year!” It’s interesting to see how the campers are even competitive with their vision screening results. I have learned that it’s easy to talk a kid that doesn’t need glasses out of wanting glasses if you tell them that they can brag about being 20/20! We also got the experience of dispensing the eyewear that we made to the campers. It’s always rewarding to see the reaction that a kid has when they really experience clear vision! I would estimate that about 80% of the camp ended up with the same frames!
The truly remarkable thing that we learned about the Camp Mariah kids is that they make a three year commitment to the year round program. Camp Mariah is a college prep camp where the campers attend class during their three week stay. They also attend programs at home and return to camp twice more during the school year. The time invested in the campers is evident by their manners.
Today we welcomed Terrence and Dan to their first full day of camp. We kept both of them busy in the lab! Terrence was busy blocking lenses and tracing frames while Dan was working both of the edgers. The day was very organized and flew by!
We had an action packed weekend from touring NYC, relaxing at All Sport, and culminating in the enjoyment of our tapas and silent auction. Saturday we spent the entire day in NYC! We started our excursion with cupcakes at Crumbs and finished with cupcakes at Magnolia. We saw Grand Central Station, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Times Square, Chinatown, The Brooklyn Bridge, South Street Seaport, Mario Batali’s Otto, and Central Park. I experienced my first subway ride, which was a bit intimidating! We also visited Sunglass Hut’s flagship store on 5th Avenue where we modeled sassy sunglasses. One of my favorite parts of the day was the skyline over the trees from Sheep’s Meadow at dusk! Our Sunday was spent poolside at Allsport. We indulged in a game of water volleyball with the septuagenarians that were eager to boss us around. At one point Anne and I were referred to as more athletic, taller and linebackers – not exactly a compliment! We rounded out our weekend with the silent auction where we achieved our fundraising goal! Hot items in the auction were unique handcrafted items, a golf flag and a custom Louisville Slugger signed by the team, as well as custom dog tags and OneSight Oakleys. The bidding did get competitive, especially on the golf flag and Oakleys!
Tomorrow we will be back at Camp Hidden Valley where we expect to see 130 campers! Good night EyeLeen!
Quote of the Day:
“Am I gonna get smacked again?”
(in reference to their experience at the NCT)
July 8, 2011
Yesterday we spent our time at Camp Tommy where we prescreened 130 campers, did 64 exams and manufactured 53 pair glasses. We started the day helping 11 campers in need from Camp ABC that we were unable to finish on Tuesday. In addition, we helped a camper from Camp Mariah who lost her glasses in the lake. Talk about being in the right place at the right time!
Camp Tommy was definitely a different experience than the other camps. We got the experience of eating lunch with the campers. At the other camps we ate at our own tables. It was very interesting to hear stories from the campers and the counselors about their experiences with The Fresh Air Fund. Crys said that her table was so well mannered that they took care of her and made sure that she was served first, was well hydrated and even cleared her dishes! The biggest difference from the other camps is that we were filmed for a documentary about OneSight and corporations that give back!
Jade was able to converse with the campers as they waited in line for their prescreening. She asked them what they were most excited to do when they got home. The three most common answers were: hugging my girlfriend, a shower, air conditioning. Rupe was interested to meet a Red Sox fan that lives in the Bronx. Crys also talked to a couple of interesting campers. One of whom stated that he wanted gold glasses so that he could look rich!
The highlight of our day was the low ropes course that we participated in. We went on an African Safari. The start of our trip was on a boat where we had to balance a board while trading places with another team member. We then moved to balance beams in the form of a square where we had to choose an animal and only communicate with the noise that our animal makes while organizing ourselves in order of size staying balanced on the beams. This was probably the favorite activity and dangerous to do while laughing hysterically. We also had to lift Anne through a hanging tire without dropping her. After we finished she was concerned that she didn’t do enough, “I should have been stiffer or something!” We finished the course learning how to play ninja, where we learned that Mita, Mike and Bob have catlike reflexes!
Today we are preparing chabellas for the Mexico Clinic! In our downtime this weekend we are planning on touring NYC and lounging by the pool and resting up for next week!
Quote of the day:
"You are sophisticated if you cheat!"
(In reference to the eye chart and auto refractor)
July 6, 2011
We started clinic at Camp Hayden Marks unsuccessfully attempting to level EyeLeen. Shortly after setting up we were busy with campers. Dr. Mita and Dr. Linda examined 102 campers and Destruction, Terror and Mayhem(Myself, Rupe and Jeremiah) manufactured 85 pair of glasses!
Today was not without drama! Anne was operating was operating the NCT in pretest when a camper jumped back and fell to the ground in agony…TWICE! We came to the rescue for the Assistant Camp Director after he his glasses broke. Shortly after, I replaced a frame for a camper who broke his -11.00 glasses so he could enjoy the rest of his trip. Mayhem was busy calibrating and troubleshooting the lab equipment. But wait, there’s more! While examining a camper Dr. Mita’s eye chart kept flipping through lines on the screen. Later she learned that the glitch was Dr. Linda using a remote that controlled the chart on both screens! The camper that she was examining was so cooperative that he raced through the letters as fast as he saw them flash onto the screen!
We are finally getting the hang of this camp thing! When it’s time to eat, it’s time to eat. As you approach your table, you must wait to be seated. We are also learning how to compost. “What comes from the ground, goes to the ground.” Jade is also choreographing a cheer and dance so we fit! Even EyeLeen is having fun at camp, she has a pet butterfly named Beatrice. We are very much looking forward to learning the low ropes course tomorrow night.
Tomorrow we will be at Camp Tommy where we expect to see another 125 campers and finish examining 10 girls from Camp ABC. Goodnight EyeLeen!
Quote of the Day:
“There’s something wrong with my nametag, they got the age wrong!”
“I’m 10, not 9! Today is my Birthday!”
(I cross out the 9 and write 10)
“Is that better?”
July 5, 2011
Today was Topcon Tuesday at Camp ABC. Several Topcon employees utilized their expertise in the pretest room and prescreened about 220 campers. While pretesting, Mike had an opportunity to chat with the campers. Some of his favorite replies to the question “what do you like most about camp?” were: swimming, carnival day, and losing weight. One grateful camper stated that their favorite thing about camp is getting glasses!
There were many firsts for clinic team members today. I completed my first pair of eyewear. Anne assisted Dr. Mita in the exam room. Jade learned how to perform the stereopsis test. Rupe attempted to help the campers select frames. Matt learned how to measure pupillary distances. Crys has no feeling left in her thumbs. Most importantly, Dr. Mita diagnosed a camper with eye infection that she will be following up with later this week!
Conveniently, our team production lead, Jeremiah, arrived at the end of the day to help finish manufacturing eyewear and pack up EyeLeen. After moving EyeLeen to Camp Hayden Marks we went on a field trip past the hilltop Hilton followed by Coldstone to reward ourselves for a hard day’s work.
Tomorrow we expect to see about 200 campers at Camp Hayden Marks. Goodnight EyeLeen!
Quote of the day:
“Sir, what is written on this paper is a falsification! I did not outgrow my glasses!”
(as stated by a 10 year old camper)
July 4, 2011
It was a good thing we ate our Wheaties this morning! Day one at clinic on the Sharpe Reservation at Hidden Valley was very busy. EyeLeen had an eventful day of offering shelter for eye exams, fashion shows, and manufacturing eyewear! For the most part, our clinic ran like a well-oiled machine. We were lucky to have the support of associates from the local Pearle Vision and LensCrafters who ensured all of the campers were seen in an orderly fashion. There was only one WWCBD moment when one of EyeLeen’s edgers wasn’t functioning and Dr. Mita had to troubleshoot the auto refractor. Even Rupe didn’t mess things up too much! We provided an eye exam and glasses to 87 campers, many receiving their first pair.
We learned a lot at our first day of clinic. We learned that it is not wise to ask a camper who is wearing a Yankees cap if he is a Sox fan. We learned that not ALL kids want glasses nor do I look good in them. Lastly, we now know that it takes a dedicated person and callused thumbs to edge and assemble 87 pair of glasses during a nine hour clinic!
Once EyeLeen was all clean and packed up we moved her to our next stop where we were greeted by the teenage girls we will see tomorrow! We did have a scare when we almost lost Matt, Rupe and Terrance to a stampede of girls as Dawn parked the van.
Today was not all work! Terrence was able to secure tickets for us to see fireworks at the Walkway Over the Hudson River. We were able to enjoy firework shows throughout the Hudson River Valley and allegedly as far as New York City! After a great day at Hidden Valley Camp and our trek to the river for fireworks, we are ready to rest up for tomorrow. We expect an action packed day at Camp ABC, where it is estimated that we will see over 200 campers!
*I promise to post pictures tomorrow!
Quote of the Day (when selecting glasses):
“I just need something simple!”
“I just wanna make sure my mom is gonna like them.”
…and my personal favorite…
“Not that you look bad in glasses, I just don’t think I will look pretty in them.”
July 3, 2011
During our stay in Fishkill, NY we will be working with The Fresh Air Fund at five camps on their Sharpe Reservation. We will be serving hundreds of children from underprivileged communities in New York City. Upon our arrival we drove up to the Sharpe Reservation to meet EyeLeen, OneSight’s newest Vision Van, in person and set up for clinic tomorrow. It is truly amazing that we will have the opportunity to improve the quality of life for so many in such a small area! After set up we attended our orientation, where we really felt as though we had gone back to camp!
Back at the hotel we indulged in authentic NY pizza pies. Word has it that the lasagna pie is a favorite among Fishkill Clinics, both past and present. Perhaps the most enjoyed excursion of the day was to the busiest Walmart on the east coast, or rather the team bonding on the walk over!
Tomorrow will be a busy day at the Hidden Valley camp, where we will see about 125 special needs children. After camp we have plans celebrate Independence Day by watching fireworks over the Hudson River!
Quote of the Day:
You might be a presbyope if you have to ask the clinic manager if you should wear your glasses instead of contact lenses so that you can take them off to read!
About the Clinic
2011 Fishkill 1 Clinic Blog Clinic
A team of 40 trained volunteers and doctors from North America will come together to provide much needed vision care and eyewear to area students attending Fresh Air Camps.