The Global Eye Project is a group of people who have created a way to help bring refractive, medical, surgical eye care to the poorest and most remote peoples of the world. We believe that the power to make change is best served by meeting a group of people living in underserved areas, and teaching them how to care for each other. We are commited to training local people, helping to create the simple brick and morter facilities that people will come to view as their own, providing them with training, and equipping their facility; starting with nothing but a wish and a dream, and making it happen. Sustainable care…. that is the goal of Global Eye Project.
While it was founded in the United States, Global Eye Project has volunteers and donors from all over the world – people who want to make a difference – people who donate their time and energy and funds to change the world one eye at a time. Slowly, we have become an international family of friends, and children, and whole families.
Anshu received her Doctor of Optometry degree from the SUNY College of Optometry and completed an optometric residency in Ocular Disease afterwards at SUNY Ocular Disease Dept/WoodHull Medical Center. She has been volunteering full time in Haiti since 2015 and providing care and training the locals and running the clinic.
As the daughter of a passionate humanitarian, Anshu was inspired to give back to the community by her mom and from her experiences growing up in India. Her first medical eye mission took her back to India and she has since focused her efforts to provide eye care in under-served areas both locally and abroad. These eye missions have taken her to Nepal, Haiti, Peru, Lebanon, Tanzania, Honduras, Guatemala, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Indonesia, and India. She is grateful to be able to work with the under-served populations both at home and internationally.
While the medical missions have been beneficial to others, she is very eager to go a step further by helping to establish something more permanent. A self-sustainable clinic staffed by local people is her ultimate goal.
Martin S. Arkin
Martin was born in Detroit. He attended the University of Michigan, where he earned a Bachelors of Science degree in Cellular and Molecular Biology with high honors and highest distinction. His college performance and research accomplishments earned him a scholarship for training as a physician-scientist for combined M.D. and PhD. (neuroscience) degrees at Washington University.
After completing an internship in internal medicine, Martin began an ophthalmology residency at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, at Harvard University. Cornea subspeciality training followed at Tufts University. His initial attraction to ophthalmology was due to the ability of procedures such as cataract extraction and laser techniques to dramatically restore sight previously lost. Cataracts and corneal problems are major causes of reversible blindness worldwide, and his training has not only proven valuable here, but also on mission trips to India, Central America, South America and the Carribean. He feels that there is no greater satisfaction than watching someone’s face after surgery when they can see again for the first time in years. You can read articles about Marty’s experiences in Haiti in 2008, 2010, and 2011.
Martin lives in Traverse City, Michigan. There has been a great need for his services, and he is pleased to be able to treat complex eye problems locally and internationally. When he is not working, he enjoys many of the outdoor activities such as kayaking, cycling, snowmobiling, canoeing and skiing.
Patrick was born and raised in Wisconsin. He completed his bachelors at McGill University and an MS in logic and computation at Carnegie Mellon. His mother, an anesthesiologist, was a volunteer on a number of medical missions around the world and an inspiration to do the same. After volunteering on several missions to Fond-des-Blancs, he was moved to help the team establish FDB’s first eye care clinic. Patrick is currently a predoctoral fellow in neuroscience at the University of Pittsburgh.
Sam received his M.D. degree from the University of Rochester and also holds a Ph.D. in Biophysics for eye research from the University of California Los Angeles. His training in Ophthalmology was completed at Harvard Medical School in Boston, MA, and consisted of three years of residency, a year as Chief Resident and a fellowship in cornea and refractive surgery at the Massachusetts Eye & Ear Infirmary. Dr. Navon has published numerous textbook chapters and scientific articles in his subspecialty.
Sam has traveled on eye missions to India, China, Bangledesh, Guatemala and Haiti, and for four years he was director of Medical Education at King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital in Saudi Arabia. He currently practices in Raleigh, North Carolina. Sam is very passionate about teaching surgical procedures to doctors in under-served areas.
Susan Koenig lives in Beulah, Michigan. She has an MA in French and teaches ESL. She has two grown children and two cats. Susan’s connection to Haiti dates back to her friendship with the Haitian community in the Bahamas, where she lived for a number of years. After the earthquake, Susan was moved to assist in Haiti’s recovery. When she learned that her Michigan eye doctor was involved in a clinic there, she joined him as a translator.
Susan learned that speaking French wouldn’t be enough in rural Haiti, so now she is learning Creole in order to improve communication with local people. She has made three trips to Fond des Blancs, and is “hooked” by the indomitable spirit of the long-suffering population of patient and loving folks in that fascinating, but impoverished part of the world. Susan is convinced that Haitians desperately need eye care, and she has committed to helping to establish a permanent clinic in Fond des Blancs.
Rita is a Massachusetts native. She received her Diploma in Nursing at St. Vincent Hospital School of Nursing in Worcester, MA, her B.S. in Psychology and Nursing at Worcester State College and her Master of Science in Nursing at Boston University. She worked for St. Boniface Haiti Foundation for 10 years doing administrative work. In 2008 she brought the first ever eye team to St. Boniface Hospital in Fond des Blancs. This hospital is the only source of healthcare for a population of 250,000 rural poor. Prompted by the tremendous need for eye care, she continues to bring eye teams to Haiti in her retirement.
When not in Haiti, she spends her time visiting her grandchildren. An avid gardener, she also enjoys knitting and other crafts.