Bay Area Chapter Welcome Letter
Sandra and Henry Wong
Dear Friends of the FFB San Francisco Chapter:
In December of 2004, after going through a series of tests and eye examinations, we learned that our son, Connor, had Stargardt disease. As Connor’s parents, we were stunned. He is the eldest of our two sons.
Searching for explanations and treatments for Stargardt disease, we soon learned that there were no treatments or cures. In 2004, we were able to contact the leading researchers in the field and found that a cure is on the horizon within the next decade. Many of the leading researchers informed us we should contact the Foundation Fighting Blindness (FFB). We connected with FFB and have joined their mission to find a cure for such eye conditions as Stargardt disease. The Foundation Fighting Blindness has given us hope.
Connor is now 11-years old and strives to do many activities other kids do, such as swimming, playing the piano, and being part of a basketball team. However, Stargardt disease affects Connor’s central vision and some of the simplest tasks that we take for granted are difficult for him. His passion is basketball, and sometimes not seeing the ball makes it difficult to receive a pass. Despite these obstacles, Connor perseveres. Connor’s courage has made it easier for us to accept his eye condition, but as his parents, we wish that we could do more.
We have been given the opportunity to be part of FFB by serving as the co-presidents of the San Francisco Chapter. We are part of an organization where we meet others who are affected, cope and succeed in life. Our chapter’s goal is to reach out and support people who are affected by visual impairments. FFB is not only a non-profit organization which raises money to help fund research and find cures/ treatments for eye diseases, but our local chapter is also here to lend support to you, your family and friends.
We have some exciting events throughout the year; in addition to Chapter meetings where leading retinal researchers share the latest scientific advances, we have fundraising events such as San Francisco Dining in the Dark – a dinner gala where the lights are completely off for about 45 minutes while attendees eat dinner in complete darkness and food is served by visually impaired waiters. It is a once in a lifetime experience you don’t want to miss. We also have our Bay Area VisionWalk at San Francisco’s beautiful Golden Gate Park. Bring – a 5K walk with friends and family. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy this fun-filled day!
We hope this gives you some insight as to what the Foundation Fighting Blindness is all about. If you know anyone who would like to join our Chapter, or is looking for support, please contact us at (310) 207-2089. We look forward to meeting you at one of our upcoming meetings or events.
Henry & Sandra Wong