Making it to the age of 96 is a blessing for anyone and Manuela Peralta de Corrales is no exception. She lives in a pueblo in an area of Peru known for its jungle. A certain amount of her longevity can probably be traced to her diet - she grows her own corn, beans and herbs, and cooks her meals over an open fire.
Even with all this “good” living, time takes its toll. About 3 years ago Manuela started to develop cataracts. This impairment worsened until she was forced to move in with her son's family who lived 11 hours away in the capitol city of Lima. Her independence had been taken away, and living in the city, her beloved contact with nature gone.
Manuela’s story is not uncommon. Many elderly in Peru who develop cataracts go blind, 55% don’t know there is a treatment option. Complicating things further 70% of Peru’s ophthalmologists have not been trained for surgery. Blindness can mean dependency, an increased risk of depression, and a shortened life.
Fortunately Manuela’s love for life and the support of her family led her to find HelpMeSee’s partner hospital, Divino Nino Jesus, where she received the cataract treatment her family could not afford on their own.
After a short recovery Manuela is returning to her home to live on her own, and in the near future removing the cataract from her other eye. After this, she will be set for the next 96 years of life as far as her eyes are concerned.