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Thursday, September 17, 2015

The Eye Bank Foundation Launches Exhibit of Artworks Centered on Gift of Sight


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The Eye Bank Foundation of the Philippines (EBFP) opened last September 14 an exhibit of around 80 artworks for its Nationwide Poster Making Contest. The public viewing, which will run until September 19 at the lobby of Gateway Mall, Araneta Center, Cubao, features the creations of Filipino artists which were made through various techniques to encapsulate the EBFP’s poster contest theme for 2015: “A journey’s end, a gift of hope, a new beginning.”

Submissions came from the metro to as far as the Visayas as a testament of the growing number of support to the EBFP’s advocacy of giving the gift of sight. All the artworks underline the theme which references to the hope that donors give others at the end of one’s journey on earth through the act of cornea or eye donation. The theme elaborates that both the recipient and the donor begin new lives; one still on earth and the other in the afterlife.

“It is heartwarming to know that we have local artists from all over the Philippines who support our cause at the Eye Bank Foundation. These artworks fuel our excitement. Hopefully, these will equally inspire the viewing public to come and join our endeavor as we mark another milestone of the EBFP’s 20th year celebration,” Dr. Minguita Padilla, President and CEO of the Eye Bank Foundation of the Philippines, said.

A press conference was held by Dr. Padilla, together with other members of the board, to foster the participation of and dialogue between the EBFP, stakeholders, partners and media personalities on the former’s campaign to reduce corneal blindness in the country; as well as to showcase the wonderful works of art created by Filipinos to inspire others to share the gift of sight. Guests to the event were also serenaded by the Lyric Opera of the Philippines’ tenor Sherwin Sozon and soprano Ana Feleo. Some of the judges who were present to officially launch the exhibit are renowned painter Manuel Ocampo and owner of web design company MAGCON, Mike Maglipon. Joining them in adjudging the best entries are Arch. Joven Ignacio and ophthalmologists/artists Dr. Eva Olivar-Santos and Dr. Victor Lopez.



Following the exhibit, 12 artworks that successfully capture the theme will be selected and reproduced as official posters of the foundation. To spread the Eye Bank Foundation’s message throughout the country, the selected artworks will also be displayed in different health centers, hospitals, partner organizations, schools, malls, and other institutions that have been supporting the EBFP’s advocacy through the years. The Eye Bank and future partners will also be featuring the winning designs in different products and merchandise through which funds may be generated to help support the organization’s mission.

The first Nationwide Poster Making Contest of the Eye Bank Foundation was held in 2007 where several of the artworks produced are still being used today to help promote the foundation’s advocacy. Entries for the EBFP’s second contest were accepted from March 17, 2015 to August 31, 2015.

Awarding of winners will be held on the EBFP’s anniversary on October 16, 2015, where the grand prize winner will receive PhP 50,000.00. First runner up will get PhP 25,000 and 2nd runner up will win PhP 15,000.00. Honorable mention winners will also receive special prizes. A special award of Php 10,000.00 will be given to the People’s Choice winner as voted by the public.

“EBFP pioneered this year the first ever Electronic Pledge form and Tissue Donor Card in the Philippines where donors can pledge their eyes or corneas as easy as going online. We want the public to know that it only takes a visit to our website to become a hero in someone else's eyes,” Dr. Padilla added. Further details are available on the webpage: www.eyebank.org.phil.

This year, the Eye Bank Foundation will be marking its 20th year since it inaugurated its medical eye bank. Since 1995, the EBFP has made precious corneal tissue available and accessible to people in need of corneal transplants throughout the Philippines through its medical eye bank known as the Santa Lucia International Eye Bank of Manila. To date, the Eye Bank Foundation continues its dedication to alleviate corneal blindness, which remains among the top five causes of blindness worldwide and one that is among the most difficult to address, due to the scarcity of transplantable corneal tissues globally.

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