Saturday, May 19, 2012

Lions get an early look at new vision screening device

Lions Brian Kline and M.J. Knobe
M. J. Knobe, Executive Director of the South Dakota Lions Foundation, points to a PowerPoint photo that shows a piece of equipment that promises to help Lions transform the way children are screened for vision problems in South Dakota.

Knobe told a gathering of Belle Fourche Lions Club members on Tuesday (5/15/12) that the foundation hopes to be able to purchase eight of the Pedia Vision units and make them available across the state for widespread screening of children.  Representatives from a few other community organizations also attended the meeting at the Belle Fourche Country Club.  The planned statewide initiative would seek to screen South Dakota children before they reach six years of age.  

"Most schools don't require vision screening," said Knobe, "and the earlier we can identify vision problems in youngsters, the better the chances of accurately diagnosing and treating problems."  

South Dakota Lions are awaiting word from the Lions International Foundation regarding a grant request for more than $59,000 to buy the eight units and help train Lions across the state to use this new technology.  

A decision is expected in June, according to Knobe, and South Dakota Lions have already begun collecting necessary funds that would match a grant from the international Lions organization.