Vision Care Center and Center for Vision Research
and The Lions Clubs of District 20-Y
At the start of the Vision 2000 campaign to support research at the Center for Vision Care (CVC) and Center for Vision Research (CVR), Lions District 20-Y stepped up and pledged $250,000 to the campaign over a three-year period. This really supported their mission of trying to eliminate preventable blindness. Their donation was really the impetus that moved the campaign forward. In addition, the CVR has been able to take that initial pledge and have turned it into over $39+ million in research funding over the past 20 years.
The local Lions fund raising efforts were able to secure a $75,000 grant from Lions Club International Foundation (LCIF) to improve equipment and services for the Centers. LCIF was founded in 1968 as a charitable arm of Lions International. "I can't say enough about the Lions involvement in our fundraising efforts," said Dr. John A. Hoepner, Former Chair of Department of Ophthalmology. "Their commitment and dedication to the Vision 2000 campaign is the primary reason for our success and they continue to support it every year." The Lions Clubs' contribution was used to further the Centers' initiatives in ophthalmic research and clinical care and to purchase special equipment. The Lions Club members of District 20-Y comprise the CNY counties from Jefferson to Broome and from Otsego to Onondaga.
From the current Chair, Dr. Robert Fechtner "We are grateful to the Lions 20-Y for their generous and continuing support of Upstate's Ophthalmology clinical and research enterprises."
Ophthalmic research at Upstate Medical University is conducted through its Center for Vision Care and its Center for Vision Research. The centers are multifaceted and draw upon the expertise and dedication of dozens of leading physicians and research scientists to provide medicine with advances in research, innovation in patient care and quality instruction in the practice of ophthalmology.
Thanks to each and every one of the 55+ Lions and Lioness Clubs of District 20-Y for supporting the Vision 2000 campaign and Center for Vision Care and Center for Vision Research. Because of the generous support from these clubs and their dedicated members, the Vision 2000 campaign surpassed its $1.2 million goal.
For more information about the Central New York Lions Clubs: http://www.centralnylions.com/
Lions' Research Presentations and Tours
Continuing to strengthen its relationship with the Lions Clubs, CVC and the CVR hosted its first-ever "Lions Day" in May 2000. Coordinated by the Upstate Medical University Foundation, this event offered the 60 Lions Clubs in Central and Southern New York the opportunity to tour the Centers and speak with a host of vision researchers, clinicians, and Vision 2000 representatives throughout the one-day event.
According to Wayne Cunningham, Co-Chair of the Lions Vision 2000 effort, "Lions Day" was a huge success. "An event like Lions Day offers all Lions members the opportunity to see first-hand, the amazing advances that are being made at the Centers. We are extremely pleased to have established a relationship with University Vision Care & Research Centers and we all hope it will continue long into the future."
Tours of the facilities at Upstate Medical University's CVC and CVR have continued each year so that the Lions can see how their generosity has enabled the Centers to work towards finding the causes and cures for blinding disorders. Many of these events have been attended by Lions International Directors. Even those Lions that have attended more than one of these events are surprised by how much has been accomplished since their last visit.
Our last such tour was held virtually on November 7, 2020. Below are photos from previous tours.