Local Golf Classic raises funds for vision screenings

The 21st annual Swing for Sight Golf Classic raises $100,000 for vision saving programs

Golf club and ball

On June 11th, the 21st annual Prevent Blindness Mid-Atlantic Swing for Sight Golf Classic was held at the Hermitage Country Club.

The classic, sponsored by Medarva at Stony Point Surgery Center, and with the help of individuals from local businesses, raised approximately $100,000. This money will help support the Prevent Blindness Mid-Atlantic (PBMA) foundation.

“Most all of our support comes locally,” said Robin Mead, Vice President / Development for PBMA. She explained that the organization and implementation of the event is done by a committee made up of individuals from local businesses, headed by John Locher of Taylor & Parrish, Inc. “They work for about six months a year on the event.”

This year’s Classic was attended by over 200 golfers, making up 48 teams. It took place on both Hermitage courses and, due to the volume of participants, the winners were divided into two flights based on handicap.

The money will go to fund programs run by PBMA, a non-profit organization. This volunteer based organization offers programs and services emphasizing early detection and prevention of loss of sight in both children and adults. “The primary means of accomplishing our mission since 1957 are through vision screening, education, and public information,” states the foundation’s website.

The money raised by the classic will go towards “our signature program,” said Mead. “Star Pupils” is a school based screening program. Public schools have mandated screening tests, but don’t always have the resources to perform them effectively. Star Pupils supplies tools to aid screening and vouchers for students needing long-term care.

“A lot of what we did was bring Amblyopia screening to schools,” said Mead. This condition, if untreated, can lead to serious vision problems. But most of all, said Mead, “we give school nurses a vision resource.” It’s a difficult job, she said, and any help the foundation can provide to lighten the load is worth it.

Plans are already underway for next year’s classic. “It’s becoming a standing tradition,” said Mead.

stock photo by kulicki

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Stephen Nielsen

Stephen Nielsen is a contributing journalist for RVANews and makes a mean pulled pork sandwich.

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