HAYWARD - In honor of Child Vision Awareness Month, Assemblymember Bill Quirk (D-Hayward), in partnership with Hayward Promise Neighborhood (HPN), provided 40 VSP vouchers for FREE vision exams and glasses to children and families during HPN’s Fresh Food for Families Program at Eden Greenway Park in Hayward.
“I can’t stress enough how vital proper vision care is for a child’s development,” said Assemblymember Quirk. “A child does as much as 80% of their learning through the eyes, if their eyes aren’t healthy they will have difficulty learning,” he added. “What’s even more concerning is that without routine eye check-ups, health problems or learning disabilities, such as ADHD, can go undiagnosed.”
“Thanks to Assemblymember Bill Quirk, multiple families are walking away today with access to vision care. Hayward Promise Neighborhood is honored to work with him during his June campaign to provide eye exams and glasses to families who are in desperate need of this service,” stated Janevette Cole, Community Engagement and Governmental Relations Specialist for Hayward Promise Neighborhood.
Modeled after the success of the Harlem Children’s Zone, the federal Promise Neighborhood Initiative began under the Obama administration in 2010 to support and improve educational and developmental outcomes for children in distressed communities. Hayward became one of the first five cities in the nation to receive the $25 million grant. The Hayward Promise Neighborhood serves the Jackson Triangle, a traditionally low-income neighborhood in Hayward, and has since been providing the necessary support services to residents and students.
Janevette recalls a humble conversation she had with one Hayward family in particular, “The Gonzalez family expressed how, despite having medical coverage, they have to pay out of pocket for eye exams and glasses. The cost was high for them and as such eye care was long overdue for their whole family. They were just so grateful for this opportunity.”
Assemblymember Quirk’s long-standing partnership with VSP has helped bring necessary vision care services to his district since his election in 2012.
“I am grateful for VSP’s strong partnership throughout the years on this important effort. Hayward Promise Neighborhood helps some of the most underserved in my district. They have built a strong support network and trust within the Jackson Triangle community and I am glad to have been able to partner with them this year,” Assemblymember Quirk concluded.