NEWS ARCHIVE TO MARCH 2008

Urgent Need for Cataract Operating Microscope
Monday 17, March 2008
Ona Network is currently in need of an operating microscope to keep serving underprivileged people in Africa this July. This follows the untimely demise of the only operating microscope at the eye theatre at the Dodoma government hospital, where our cataract project is run. To be able to operate on another 100 patients this July, and to keep providing this service for years to come, a microscope must be purchased and sent to Tanzania by June. We have received a quote of $6500 from a supplier, if you wish to support in any way please do not hesitate to contact us.

Now organising tours
Monday 10, March 2008
We are delighted to inform our future volunteers that we have secured discounted tours for our volunteers while in Tanzania. The package includes Kilimanjaro climbing and visits to the main national parks of Tanzania, such as the Serengeti and Ngorongoro. Volunteers are encouraged to take advantage of this offer. Please contact for us further details.

Six Years of Support from Optometry Association Australia (OAA) - (Qld/NT)
Tuesday 26, February 2008
26th Feb 2008 marks exactly six years of support from the Optometrist Association Australia. The association has been instrumental in collecting used optical equipment and other important material for Ona Network’s optometry programs in Africa. Ona Network wishes to thank the association for their invaluable support. A large donation of spectacles was also received from OAA Western Australia this past year. Thanks to OAA WA for joining and supporting our efforts.

Ona Network Welcomes New Ona Qld President
Tuesday 12, February 2008
Ona Network Inc. is very happy to welcome Mr. John Williams as the new president of the Ona Network’s branch in Queensland Australia. John has been a member of Ona Qld since its Incorporation. Having John as part of our large family of volunteers will significantly contribute to our goal of reducing the burden of preventable blindness in Africa.

ALCON Behind Our Efforts
Monday 10, December 2007
In an effort to help those suffering from blindness in Tanzania - one of the poorest countries in the world, Alcon Australia has committed to donating the surgical consumables needed for Ona Network’s cataract project for the next three years. “Alcon is very happy too that we can help you in this way” said Dave Van Honk, managing director of Alcon Australia.
Alcon’s donation will travel over 18,000 km before reaching Dodoma, the region with the highest rate of blindness in Tanzania. Here, Ona Network works with the government of Tanzania to provide cataract surgeries to those who cannot afford it. We thank Alcon for their very active support of the global effort to eliminate preventable blindness.

Can you organise a trivia night?
We are in need of more people to organise trivia nights to raise funds for our projects in Africa. Trivia nights can be organised for friends and relatives, and are a simple but effective way to raise funds. Thanks to Heather, our valued volunteer in Brisbane, who has organised a number of very successful trivia nights. If interested in becoming involved, please contact Frank on contact us.

Alcon Australia Donates to Ona Network
Tuesday 3, October 2006
Ona Network is proud to announce that Alcon (Australia) has become the sole major supporter of the Dodoma Cataract Project for 2006. Alcons support is covering consumables and staff airfares.
Alcon, Inc. is the worlds leading eye care company. Alcon, which has been dedicated to the ophthalmic industry for more than 50 years, develops, manufactures and markets pharmaceuticals; surgical equipment and devices, contact lens care solutions and other vision care products that treat diseases, disorders and other conditions of the eye.
Alcons support will enable Ona network to offer free cataract surgeries to 100 of the poorest people in Africa. The operations will be performed this December alongside Ona Networks eye camp in Dodoma - Tanzania. Dodoma is the region in Tanzania with the highest incidence of eye disease and blindness. Most people in Dodoma region do not have the means to access cataract surgery, because of their overwhelming poverty.
Besides providing the free cataract surgeries, Ona network will also cover the associated costs, such as transport to and from the hospital, accommodation and meals during the period of hospitalisation, staff training and patients training.

ONA Network Receives an Official Recognition from the Tanzania Ministry of Health
April 2006
Following the impact of the activities of ONA Network in increasing the availability of optometry care to poor communities in Tanzania, the Tanzania Ministry of health have officially recognized our efforts. In her letter to ONA Network, Dr. Saguti the Tanzania national eye care coordinator said, "The Tanzania National Eye Care Program (NECP) has recognized your organization in a number of activities performed up country in providing eye care services. NECP will continue to recognize your organisations input in achieving Vision2020 targets in the country".
Following this I would like to say thank you to all our supporters and volunteers who made our services count.
Our future plans are to gradually but significantly increase the number of people benefiting from our community optometry program. Through this program we will continue to offer both free and low cost spectacles. To double the number of people seen every year a July camp has been introduced this year and the December camp will now incorporate the provision of free cataract surgery to financially deprived people. As a pilot project, it is expected that 100 people from the poorest families will benefit from the cataract project.

EyeCamp2006
January 2006
We are now accepting volunteer applications for EyeCamp2006. There will be two camps this year. These are organised for July and December.

Volunteer Placements
Several optometric and non-optometric positions are currently available in Tanzania for short-term (2 - 12 weeks), medium term (6 - 12 months) and long-term (1.5 - 3 years) placements.