M&M Eye Institute and the Caborcan Lions Club have been partnering for ophthalmological Missions in Caborca, Mexico (Prescott’s Sister City) for the past six years. Every November, the group bring up their equipment, staff and supplies and set minds to one goal. The goal is simple, help people see again. With Dr. Scott Markham and Dr. Steve Mortenson behind the microscope, the group have delivered cataract surgeries to hundreds of patients over the years. They then travel to Rocky Point and offer free eye exams and glasses to elementary school children.
The first four years were relatively simple, small operations with a single surgeon, small surgical staff and group of volunteers to guide patients through the pre and post-operative care. A small group of volunteers and one to two doctors would then make the trip for free eye examinations in Rocky Point. The system worked great, but the group wanted and needed to do more. In 2016, the group made strides in the size and scope of their operation. With access to a new surgery center procured by the Caborcan Lions Club, the group were able to seek help from providers from all over the United States including surgical and optometric residents to perform nearly 70 surgical cases in a single day of operation. Nearly all of these cases would be considered complex by U.S. standards, so these patients had a truly life changing degree of visual improvement. And now, the group wants to make 2017 even more successful.
The group has done little to no fundraising in previous years with the cost of gas, insurance for cars and transporting of medical equipment across the border, etc. being covered primarily by the doctors. Nearly everything necessary for the surgeries has been donated, but it’s the “little things” that add up. The volunteer surgical staff have been carpooling in their own cars/trucks to get everything, everyone safely and successfully across the border and back. The group would appreciate any donations possible, including the use of a van or anything to lessen the burden of the cost to the volunteers and doctors.
The money raised will be spent towards purchasing medical supplies, frames and lenses with the rest of the money donated to the Caborcan Lions Club to help them in providing more services to the community.
In addition to this outreach, the group will also be supported by volunteers from the Phoenix Asian American Lions Club where free vision screenings to more than 1,500 underprivileged adults and children in Caborca will be given along with free eye glasses for those who need them.
Lastly, for so many years, the Caborcan Lions Club have received medical supplies from The 3000 Club, a non-profit organization with a 501 (c) 3 status (EIN# 27-3295358). All donated funds will be collected by The 3000 Club and tax deduction receipts will be made available to the donors.
Thank you all for your donations.
Scott Markham, DO Steve Mortenson, MD Shane Sanders, OD
and all of the technical and surgical staff of M&M Eye Institute and Lions volunteers