UNSUNG HERO: Eldorado Lions Club member offers vision screening - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

UNSUNG HERO: Eldorado Lions Club member offers vision screening

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ELDORADO -- An Eldorado Lions Club member is going the extra mile to help families. A two-second screening the club now offers could save parents and their children time and money.

"May detect near-sided, far-sided, or astigmatism," said Steve Griffin.  

Steve is the Eldorado Lions Club Secretary. He travels to area schools with the Plusoptix machine.

"It takes a picture of the eyes and it uses infrared. It takes a measurement from the back of the eye," said Steve. He said the machine looks for any abnormalities.     

"The camera is manufactured to check for risk factors of a condition of the eye that would lead to Amblyopia which is considered lazy eye."  

The Lions Club centers on low vision and hearing for all ages. Generally, the group buys glasses and hearing aids for those in need.

"This is one way we feel like we can really make a difference. A direct difference, right on the front line," said Eldorado club president Brian Voight.

Steve approached the group about two years ago to get approval for the $6500 purchase. Brian said it wasn't an easy sell since the Lions Club is funded by fundraisers and donations.

"We thought it was a very worthy cause. We voted on it and we purchased the machine. Of course with the agreement that Steve would learn how to use it," said Brian.   

Brian believes, thanks to Steve, the club is now able to do a lot more for parents and their children.

"He was thoughtful enough to see the need and to see this tool that was available. He could have just walked on by," said Brian.  

Steve said the machine works best for children ages six months to six-years-old.
"If Amblyopia is detected early enough it's 100 percent corrected," said Brian.     

Steve looks for the machine to tell him if each screening is a pass or refer. 

"I'd like to see every single one of them pass but I know that's not going to happen and the refers, you hope that if they are referred, that the parents will follow up with an eye-care professional," said Steve.  

Brian said Steve volunteered to carry out the screenings on his on time, meeting with the schools and learning how to use the machine.

"The greatest ability is availability so a good Lion is available and he's always willing to say, yes we can," said Brian.    
Steve has traveled to multiple schools across the region and Brian said his dedication embodies the Lions Club motto of, "we serve".

"Steve is definitely a servant and he just wanted to serve more people," said Brian.

"If we can find just one that we made a difference in their life, to me it's worth the cost of the camera," added Brian.

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