Santa Barbara Vision Care Helps Essential Workers

April 2020 | Patient stories

By Paolena Comouche

Content Writer / Special Projects

During this global pandemic, state-wide shutdowns of non-essential businesses have forced millions of American families to face a loss of income. One of these families is that of Rafael and his wife and young daughter. Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Rafael’s wife has been disallowed from working, cutting the family’s income in half. As a truck driver, Rafael’s job is considered essential, and his family is now entirely dependent on his ability to work.

Because of his vision impairment, Rafael is unable to drive at night without his glasses and when he lost them, he was desperate to find a replacement as quickly as possible. It was seemingly impossible to do with so many businesses being closed.

Rafael was able to get in contact with SEE’s Yaneth Beltran, the Director of the Santa Barbara Vision Care Program, after receiving her business card from a friend. Yaneth immediately contacted Goleta Valley Optical and arranged for a prescription pair of glasses to be made for Rafael as soon as possible. Rafael rushed from Santa Maria to Goleta Valley Optical, where they were able to provide him a brand-new pair glasses within a few short hours.

With his glasses, Rafael is now able to continue working to provide for his family. SEE International is grateful for any opportunity to help essential workers during these trying times. Though our office is currently closed for the safety of our employees and patients, we are still open to helping essential workers in emergency situations. If you or any essential workers you know in the Santa Barbara County area have a vision-related emergency, please contact Yaneth Beltran at yaneth@seeintl.org to SEE if we can help.

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