Letty Cruz has a favorite “hat”.

If we could see an invisible hat rack in her office we’d see that this 15-year veteran of the ASELSI clinic has a heart to serve wherever she is needed. She has a laboratory technician hat, one for receptionist, another for serving in the physical therapy area, a hat for keeping up on office duties, and some retired hats that would read: interim clinic director, cook, teacher, and more. But there is one hat that she likes the best. It’s the hat that would read “Ophthalmology.” For those of us who don’t speak medical jargon, that’s the eye and glasses program.

If Letty had to choose her favorite of all the things she does, the eye program would be the one she’d choose above the others.

This program sees hundreds of patients each year. They start in the ASELSI clinic, but Letty and her team don’t just stay around here. They carefully pack their glasses and supplies and travel hours out into the mountains to serve patients who have little or no access to eye care.

“I like it,“ Letty said of the outreaches. “Because the people have a lot of needs.”

Going out into the rural villages and caring for those needs is exactly what Letty and her team do.

Recently Letty led a team of eight people (six eye team members, an evangelist and a driver) on a seven-hour journey up into the Zona Reina or “Queen’s Zone” to check eyes, deliver glasses, and share the light of Christ.

For two days, Letty and her team cared for over 120 patients, fitted 114 reading glasses and 15 pairs of glasses for nearsightedness. They discovered eight cases of cataracts and seven pterygium (a growth on the eye caused by sun and dust exposure) that they were able to refer to the eye surgeon who performs surgeries at ASELSI.

While the patients waited their turn to have their eyes checked, they met with the evangelist who happens to be Letty’s husband, Carlos. Many people who come to the eye clinic have their eyes opened both physically and spiritually.

Letty reported that many people accept Jesus Christ during these mobile eye clinics.

“I feel happy because we can serve those who can’t travel or buy (the glasses), those who only have enough for their daily food,“ she said. “I like to do the traveling clinics because that is where the people need it most and the people are more thankful in the rural areas.”

During the most recent trip to the Zona Reina, Letty got sick, but it didn’t dampen her spirits about these outreach trips.

“I got sick, she said. “But God gave me strength.”

That divine strength got her through those long days in the eye clinic out in the mountains and keep her going so she can put on the hat she likes best—finding those who have been living in a blurry world and giving them new vision.

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With a monthly donation, you can help Letty, her team, and others continue the outreaches that are impacting thousands of lives through the medical clinic and leadership training of ASELSI. 

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