The John Fawcett Foundation

Explore Bali | Written By, NOW! BALI |

“There are over 4 million blind people in Indonesia, and over 3 million of these are cataract blind, a condition which is curable in most cases. However for most Indonesians the cost of a cataract operation is far beyond their financial capacity and they remain blind throughout their lives, a burden on their families and communities. The John Fawcett Foundation (JFF) is committed to do as much as it can to eradicate curable blindness, particularly in Bali, and to this end is seeking funding to expand its very successful mobile eye clinic model to other economically disadvantaged areas of Indonesia. NOW! Bali sat down with John Fawcett and learned more about his foundation.”

“There are over 4 million blind people in Indonesia, and over 3 million of these are cataract blind, a condition which is curable in most cases. However for most Indonesians the cost of a cataract operation is far beyond their financial capacity and they remain blind throughout their lives, a burden on their families and communities.

The John Fawcett Foundation (JFF) is committed to do as much as it can to eradicate curable blindness, particularly in Bali, and to this end is seeking funding to expand its very successful mobile eye clinic model to other economically disadvantaged areas of Indonesia. NOW! Bali sat down with John Fawcett and learned more about his foundation.”

When and how was the John Fawcett Foundation founded?

It all started when the then Bali Governor Ida Bagus Mantra came to me for help. He was looking for a way to eradicate the number of blindness cases caused by cataracts here on the island. And so the John Fawcett Foundation was founded, and together with its Indonesian counterpart, the Yayasan Kemanusiaan Indonesia, the “Sight Restoration and Blindness Prevention Project” started in 1991 with the mobile eye clinic, offering cataract surgery free of charge for economically disadvantaged people in the villages of Bali.

What are JFF’s goals?

To relieve sickness, suffering and distress in families of the lower socio-economic groups, occasioned through blindness, eye disease, cleft lips and palates, and serious crippling and debilitating diseases, particularly in children, through the provision of medical equipment, medical care, medical advice, welfare and support services. We also aim to promote literacy and numeracy projects to alleviate poverty as the root cause of problems in health, nutrition, crime and war; to raise, receive, hold and invest funds to finally support such work; to carry out such other related activities as the Foundation’s Committee may determine; and to operate without alignment to any governmental, institutional, political or religious organization.

How does JFF achieve its goals?

The Foundation’s success in achieving its goals since the beginning of its involvement in Indonesia has been dependent on the work of a large number of very dedicated volunteers who freely give their time. These include logistics people in Australia who organize medical equipment and supplies, medical personnel who come to Bali and teach local doctors and medical staff in new surgical techniques, those who help to raise funds, and numerous others.

Are there any other programs that JFF provides for the underprivileged people?

The John Fawcett Foundation is committed to more than sight restoration. Other projects include

Children’s Corrective Surgery, Education Assistance, Assistance to Desperately Ill Children and

Young People, and Prosthetic Eyes.

What is the biggest obstacle in running the programs?

It’s definitely the funds. The projects that we run are not cheap. We also have an urgent need for the following ophthalmic equipment:  

  • • Ophthalmic A-scanners, complete with probe and manuals
  • • Keratometers – optical type
  • • Tonometers – non-touch
  • • Auto-refractors – bench or hand-held
  • • Ophthalmic slit lamps
  • • Ophthalmic microscopes
  • • Ophthalmic instruments for cataract surgery
  • • Ophthalmic operating tables
  • • Speed sterilizers for surgical instruments – small

Do you have a strategy to overcome this problem?

We actively seek out donors and sponsorships to help fund our programs. I’d like to thank those who have been helping us for their generous support. It is thanks to them that The John Fawcett Foundation is able to provide medical and other humanitarian assistance to needy people.!

Your donation can change a life. To make a cash donation or if you are able to donate any of the items mentioned above you can contact JFF and/or visit their office at:

Jalan Pengembak 16, Blanjong, Sanur

Phone: 270 812

Email: yki@indo.net.id

Tax deductable donations can be made from Australia, United Kingdom, and United States of America. To learn about this you can visit www.balieye.org.

 

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NOW! BALI

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