Hume locals give generously

The foundation performed 3.9 million eye screenings in 2022 (supplied).

Hume had the fifth highest number of individuals who donated to the Fred Hollows Foundation, helping to raise more than $351,000 across the state in the past 12 months.

The foundation has thanked the community for their continued generosity and support during a difficult year for households.

In the past year, more than 9500 Victorians became regular supporters of the foundation, helping them treat hundreds of thousands of people living with avoidable blindness.

Nearby council Brimbank was named the top giving area, followed by Hobson’s Bay, Whittlesea and Moreland.

Founding director Gabi Hollows said the steadfast support and generosity shown by residents was particularly heartwarming given the current cost of living pressures.

“We know this year has been especially tough for families,” Ms Hollows said.

“That’s why we are so incredibly grateful that people continue to support our work, allowing us to deliver life-changing treatments here in Australia and around the world.

“Thank you to Victoria for allowing us to keep Fred’s vision of ending avoidable blindness alive. Without your generosity, the foundation couldn’t restore sight to those who need it most.”

In 2022, the foundation performed 3.9 million eye screenings, 122,000 cataract operations, 79,000 surgeries to treat trachoma, 10,000 diabetic retinopathy treatments and 304,000 other sight saving or improving interventions.

One of the patients who received life-changing surgery last year was a 10-year-old Cambodian boy, who was born with cataract in both eyes.

The genetic condition can lead to permanent blindness if left untreated, and his parents did everything they could to get him the help he needed.

They were then put in touch with two eye doctors trained by The Fred Hollows Foundation and in January 2022, he underwent successful cataract surgery.