Translated by Ariel Chan
Edited by Andrea Barkley
On May 21, 2023, a Tzu Chi Vision Mobile Clinic, the 11th of its kind in the United States, debuted in Las Vegas, Nevada, significantly broadening the reach of Tzu Chi’s mobile vision care services. The Tzu Chi USA National Headquarter Region’s Las Vegas Service Center seized this opportunity to host a grand opening celebration that incorporated a Buddha Day ceremony honoring the birth, enlightenment, and passing of the Buddha.
The introduction of the Tzu Chi Vision Mobile Clinic by Tzu Chi USA fulfills the dream of ophthalmologist Dr. Karen Hsueh, a committed participant in Tzu Chi’s medical mission. “Today is a really exciting day, it’s our grand opening for the Vision Mobile Clinic, and I’m really, really happy to be part of it,” she declared.
Las Vegas is home to numerous financially under-resourced families who grapple with costly vision care and other medical expenses. Children with vision impairments often defer check-ups, significantly affecting their academic achievement and daily routines. To counteract this issue, Tzu Chi USA Las Vegas Service Center intends to dispatch the Tzu Chi Vision Mobile Clinic to schools, offering students free vision screening and eyeglasses.
Besides students, numerous vulnerable groups with unstable or nonexistent income have worn the same pair of eyeglasses for several years without replacement. They can’t repair or receive proper eye care when their glasses are damaged, or their vision changes. The availability of the mobile clinic, staffed with ophthalmologists, presents a solution to their healthcare hurdles.
The Tzu Chi Vision Mobile Clinic will navigate through diverse neighborhoods across Las Vegas, delivering medical services to those in need and protecting the health of at-risk communities. Dr. Karen Hsueh stated, “By having this mobile vision clinic, With this Tzu Chi Vision Mobile Clinic, we’re going to tremendously help out our community. I think it can really change their lives; I’m hoping we can make a difference in their lives.”
The joyful atmosphere also permeated the Tzu Chi USA Las Vegas Service Center, where volunteers celebrated Buddha’s birthday and invited the public to join in. The solemn ceremony brought a sense of peace and joy to many first-time participants. Paula Diaz shared, “It’s beautiful, I’ve never attended [an event] like this.”
At the same time, this was an event celebrating the expansion of medical outreach in the region. The volunteers’ empathy with vulnerable families and their enthusiasm about meeting their vision care needs inspired the participants. Paula Diaz expressed her appreciation, “I like the [sense of] community and the harmony that was there, helping children, because it’s important. Vision is necessary.”
For Tzu Chi USA volunteers in Las Vegas, serving each care recipient attentively and offering what they need is paramount. The arrival of a new Vision Mobile Clinic will bolster the extensive healthcare services they can provide for residents.
From serving at-risk populations to school children in need, Tzu Chi USA Las Vegas volunteers embody the principle of safeguarding the health of underserved and underprivileged individuals in Nevada.
With increasing mobile clinics across the United States, Tzu Chi volunteers are upholding the medical mission while spreading the seeds of love and compassion everywhere they go.