The iCare Initiative University of Alberta (ICIUA)

The iCare
University of
Alberta (ICIUA)
[email protected]
Who are we?
 Started in 2009
 Student run organization affiliated with the
University of Alberta
 The goal of iCare Initiative University of Alberta
(ICIUA) is to help improve general health
education in Edmonton’s inner city elementary
schools, with a special emphasis placed on vision
Why do the work?
 Vision health awareness is often an overlooked
aspect of elementary education
 Our hope is that eye care may be more
effectively addressed in schools
 Children that DO have visual acuity issues may
be screened and have their needs addressed
What do we do?
 ICIUA works through 3 different agendas:
1. Education
2. Screening
3. Fundraising
 Every month, we take a team of 12-14 volunteers
into a local inner city elementary school.
 Perform a basic presentation on general health
concepts (i.e. nutrition & exercise) with a special
emphasis on eye care and vision health.
 Training session for all volunteers on how to
conduct screenings
 Visual acuity values are assigned, and a
qualitative assessment is completed of that
child’s vision.
 A letter is sent home to the students
parent/guardian, indicating the general
condition of their child's eyesight.
 Most importantly, the letter will inform the
parent/guardian that under Alberta Health,
anyone under the age of 19 can receive one free
eye exam every year.
 Our primary goal: to inform parents about this
free service that exists for their children that they
may or may not know about
 Another very important aspect of our group
 We are in the process of developing a program
in which we would subsidize a portion of the
students eyeglasses, if they were unable to afford
Our work
 ICIUA works throughout the year on a continuous
 We educate and screen at a different inner city
school once per month
 We also host a campus fundraiser once per
 We are in the planning stages of an ‘Vision
Health Symposium/Optometry Day’ to be held in
the Winter semester
Long term vision
 Currently working on bringing all the parties that
we hope to work with together (e.g. Edmonton
Catholic and Public School boards, the Alberta
Optometrist’s Association, the CNIB, Lens Crafters,
and Lions Club)
 Pitch our idea and to discuss means for us all to
work together in a coordinated fashion to get our
initiative off the ground.
Long term vision
 Research team is in place to start collecting data
on our screenings.
 With this evidence-based approach, we hope to
install a program over time, in Edmonton’s
elementary schools, whereby mandatory
screenings occur on an annual basis.
Thank You!
For more information, email us at [email protected]

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