For Josué Figueroa, a young Special Olympics athlete from Mexico, blackness was the only world he knew for his first six years of life. But thanks to a Special Olympics Opening Eyes/Young Athletes screening, Josué was able to see for the first time.
Since Josué was two years old, his mother believed that he was blind due to his severely watery eyes. At the Opening Eyes screening, however, she was told that her son would be able to see with a simple pair of glasses.
I took the first picture when the volunteers told us that Josué could see. Everyone was deeply excited, but the best moment was when Josué opened his eyes and caressed his mom´s face. All of us cried and his mom could not believe it.
The longer-term impact has been tremendous.
“He smiles a lot and started to eat by himself," Josué's mother said. "He now knows his friends and plays with toys that he’s never played with. He does not want to be carried or go in his stroller because he wants to see all around."
About Thelma Torres: Dr. Torres is a clinical director for the Special Olympics Opening Eyes Program in Mexico.