Blindness Briefs – Edition 58

What's Inside

  • YouTuber MrBeast pays to have 1000 people's cataracts cured.
  • New talking credit card for blind users.
  • Celebrating white cane week.
  • Assault class for blind people formed.
  • Blind woman with other disabilities throat slashed in care home.
  • And, nearly 30 stories about blindness and blind people from the entire world.

Editorial By Chris Hofstader

Welcome to the 58th edition of Blindness Briefs, your news source for all things blindness in the world. I need to start by saying that this is something of an abbreviated edition of this regular World Blind Herald feature. One reason for this was that we encountered a problem with our GoogleAlerts from which we get most of our articles. For no reason I can currently explain, there were two days in which I received none of the 25 or so different alerts I have set up, something that had never happened in the past. I've written to GoogleAlerts tech support but haven't heard anything back from them. To make sure this doesn't effect us in the future, we now have a back-up system so we'll get all of the alerts even if they break on any of our accounts. The second reason is that we don't like to include more than one article about any particular story in any given week and this week two stories dominated the news of the blind world and pushed out other stories that we probably would have seen otherwise.

One of the stories that dominated the media this week was the one about YouTuber MrBeast paying to have 1000 people's cataract surgery performed. We must have seen about a hundred headlines about this story and for some reason it blew up into something very controversial. One person went so far as to label MrBeast as "demonic" for his act of charity. People on the right wing of the political spectrum were angry that he mentioned that better healthcare systems would have obviated his efforts as they oppose government based healthcare. Some people on the left wing of the political spectrum criticized him for not saying more about healthcare systems that allow people to go blind when it can be easily corrected with a tried and true surgery that's been available for more than a century. Others found fault with MrBeast, a person with more than 100 million YouTube followers for "pulling a publicity stunt" by helping these 1000 people with cataracts. I'd never heard of MrBeast before this story and he says that his goal is to do good with the money he earns and hopes to give away every penny he has in his lifetime. I wish there were better ways to get people the surgeries they need in the various nations where MrBeast paid for people to have their vision restored but I also think this philanthropist has done something great with this project but, I suppose it's 2023 and no good deed can happen without controversy.

I'd also like to provide a note for our subscribers. At the bottom of the emails you receive from us, you can go to subscriber settings and set to receive our updates as a digest rather than getting typically three and this week four separate emails with each post as they go up. If you'd prefer a single email, you can now have it.

I hope you enjoy this edition, albeit a short one, of Blindness Briefs.

How It's Organized

WBH Weekly Blind News Digest is a very simple page to read. The categories are at heading level 2 and the stories are links at heading level 3. So, navigation to the sections and stories you find interesting is quite simple.


Talking credit cards help visually impaired people prevent abuse

But the main challenge for blind people is that they can't confirm whether the price the retailer keys in is accurate. This story comes to us from:

Restore Your Vision: Innovative Implants In The Optics World

A retinal implant helps restore vision by converting light from external surroundings into electrical impulses required by the brain to generate sight. This story comes to us from: Healthnews.

Blindness Organizations

Prevent Blindness Provides Free Resources for February's Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Low Vision Awareness Month

National Nonprofit group, Prevent Blindness, Provides Free Resources on AMD and Low Vision Including Dedicated Webpages, Fact Sheets, New Spanish-language Graphics, An Interactive Patient Guide, and More. This story comes to us from: Yahoo Finance.

White Cane Week back to bring visual impairment awareness to Kamloops

“We go out into the community and make people aware of people with vision loss and blindness and we show them the different ways we get around. This story comes to us from: CFJC Today Kamloops.


Afghan Girls in Grades 7-12 Have Been Out of School for Over 500 Days

This comes as blind female students also expressed concerns about their uncertain future.
Malika, who is blind, is a student of grade 11.
Malika said that the only hope she had was school, but she has been deprived of it for several months. This story comes to us from: TOLOnews.


New street layouts still unsafe say blind people

New street layouts aimed at encouraging walking and cycling are continuing to make life dangerous for visually impaired people, it has been claimed.
More streets in Scotland's biggest cities are being transformed to give priority to active travel.
However, visually impaired people have told the BBC the concerns they warned about in the early designs are still cropping up in new schemes. This story comes to us from: BBC.

Cafe culture' city centre presents 'assault course' for blind people

An 'anxious' blind woman fears she will be hurt or even killed because of the increasing dangers on the city centre's cluttered streets. This story comes to us from: The Worcester News.

Woman's warning to fitness fanatics as she goes BLIND after pushing herself too hard in the gym

Reality star Jessica Brody has warned fitness fanatics about pushing themselves too hard at the gym. This story comes to us from: Daily Mail.


woman faces eviction due to high rent

A disabled, blind woman called Contact 5 after dealing with a rent increase and a death in the family that is now leading to a possible eviction. This story comes to us from: YouTube.


Durban couple who swindled the KZN Blind and Deaf Society of millions out of 'greed', jailed

A Durban husband and wife found guilty of swindling millions of rand from the KZN Blind and Deaf Society have been sentenced to jail. This story comes to us from: IOL.

Woman with disabilities had throat slashed at care facility

Carter, 35, is blind, non-verbal, and has profound developmental disabilities, according to state and local documents provided by Greg Carter, her father and guardian. Her throat was slashed while at an intermediate care facility in Fairfield. This story comes to us from: Yahoo News.

Guide Dogs

Guide Dogs for the Blind chooses Austin to raise puppies, but volunteers needed

You might start seeing more little puppies out and about around Austin. That’s because the city was chosen by Guide Dogs for the Blind to help raise and train guide dogs that will eventually be given away to a handler. This story comes to us from: KXAN.


Iranian security forces shoot at the eyes of mostly young women

Protesters are being shot in the head and face, leaving “many, including a significant number of young women, blind. This story comes to us from: The Bharat Express News.


Settlement agreement helps voters with print disabilities

A new settlement agreement in a federal lawsuit in Indiana should make voting easier for voters with print disabilities. The state has agreed to acquire a new remote accessible ballot marking tool. It will allow voters to access and mark their ballots digitally with their own assistive technology. Then, they can submit it via email. “Print disabled people deserve equity in voting rights. By ensuring an accessible electronic means for voting absentee, this settlement agreement provides many of Indiana’s blind and print disabled voters an accessible means to exercise our voting rights, privately and independently," said Dee Ann Hart, a member of the Board of Directors of the American Council of the Blind of Indiana and its Advocacy and Awareness Committee Chair. This story comes to us from: WTHI.


Age Related Vision Dysfunction Market is expected to reach valuation of US$ 130 Billion | FMI Study

The rising prevalence of visual impairment and blindness is a major driver of the global market for age-related vision dysfunction. This story comes to us from: FMIBlog.

How much does it cost to cure blindness?

The cost of treating blindness can vary greatly depending on several factors, such as the underlying cause of the blindness, the type of treatment, and the location where the treatment is being performed. Some common causes of blindness include age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, cataracts, and retinal detachment, among others. This story comes to us from: Volsiz.


YouTuber MrBeast, 24, pays for 1000 blind people to have sight restored

MrBeast has paid for 1,000 blind or almost-blind people to get life-changing surgery to restore their sight. MrBeast, whose real name is Jimmy Donaldson, released a video on Saturday detailing the thousand people getting cataracts removed with the help of the non-profit eye care organization, See. The 24-year-old star also gave $10,000 to a number of patients, bought one a Tesla, and even donated a huge sum to one's university fund. “We’re curing a thousand people’s blindness,” says Mr Donaldson in the video released Saturday, which had already wracked up 32 million views by Monday morning. This story comes to us from: The Mirror.

One woman's mission to break the stigma of being blind

Claire Sisk joins us to explain how she gets things done day to day as a visually impaired person. This story comes to us from: ITV.

Until he was 5, my son lived in 'a world where no one knew he was blind

From the very beginning, so much about my son Henry didn’t make sense. The clues were all there; we just didn’t know how to read them. He didn’t look at me or recognize me when I walked into the room. He wasn’t interested in toys, books and videos. He freaked out in new and busy environments. He wasn’t gaining weight or meeting any milestones. At about five months, his eyes began to shake. We spent years navigating a gauntlet of medical providers, specialists, MRIs, ER visits and new diagnoses. Yet, for the first five years of Henry’s life, his disability went undiagnosed. Even his pediatric ophthalmologist insisted that Henry’s vision was fine and instead attributed his challenges to attention and behavioral issues. Henry was a gentle soul, but several times a day he would have meltdowns where he screamed, kicked, pulled my hair, scratched me and threw anything he could get his hands on. I had no idea what to do, and it just broke me to see him like this. Now, I know he was trying to communicate how hard it was to exist in a world not designed for him, a world where no one knew he was blind. This story comes to us from: WBUR.

Unconditional Love: Woman marries blind man, aspires to be his guiding light

Having a bad childhood Laxmi now wishes to start a new and happy family with Mitu and give him everything that she missed as an orphan child. This story comes to us from: OdishaTV.

After Wife Becomes Blind From an Accident, Man Learns How to do Her Makeup

In a heartwarming story that has captivated the internet, a middle-aged gentleman made his way into the make-up section of a department store with a mission to learn how to put on make-up. Salespeople were initially taken aback, but were quickly won over by the man's sincere desire to help his wife. The man's wife had recently lost her sight in a terrible accident, and as a result, she was unable to apply her own make-up. Despite being married for over two decades, the woman's lack of confidence had taken a toll on her self-esteem. Her husband, who knew she was the most beautiful woman in the world, wanted to help bring back her confidence by being able to put on her make-up for her. This story comes to us from: NewsBreak Original.

Art and Artists

Seeing through someone else's eyes

If you lost your sight, how would you describe the last thing you saw? This is what ten vision impaired Australians have done, describing their last, or most cherished visual memories to an artist and composer each, to bring together the Last Seen showcase. This story comes to us from: Griffith News.

SCAC hosts Helen Keller Art Show, Robin Nance Metz Art Competition

The gallery displays pieces from throughout the state made by students who have visual impairments, blindness and or deaf-blindness. This story comes to us from: Shelby County Reporter.

VIDEO: Blind man uses Braille to create artwork

An artist who started losing his sight as a child is using Braille to showcase his artistic ability. Across the pond in Britain – he’s using Braille to break down barriers. Clark Reynolds, 41, has a color-coded Braille system to decode messages in his London exhibit known as the “Power of Touch." After his sixth birthday, Reynolds started to lose vision in his right eye. Since, he has lost the rest. Reynolds set out to not only learn Braille but make it accessible with others, especially in school curriculums. This story comes to us from: – WANE 15.

Blind piano player uplifts others through music

Blind since the age of 9, he trained as a classical pianist and uses his skills to encourage and uplift others. This story comes to us from: NewsTimes.

Sports and Athletes

U.S. blind soccer men's team takes aim at competing on global stage

As local station KPBS reports, the men's team has set their hopes on competing in the 2028 Paralympic Games. This story comes to us from: PBS.

Northeast Zonal Blind Football Tournament: Naga women emerge champions

Nagaland women's blind football team defeated Meghalaya win the championship title in the Women's Northeast Zonal Blind Football Tournament. This story comes to us from: Eastern Mirror.

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