|Posted on:||Monday, 16th October, 2017|
CBM's Sight for Whitney campaign has been shortlisted for the Premier Digital Awards' Best Online Campaign. The online campaign enabled CBM supporters in the UK to walk with 8 year-old Whitney on her life-changing journey from blindness to sight and support her through prayer.
Whitney, who lives in Uganda, was born with cataracts that slowly clouded both of her eyes. Her family couldn’t afford surgery to have them removed. By the time she was found by a CBM outreach worker, after 4 years of blindness, it was nearly too late to restore her sight.
Through regular updates via SMS, social media and email, Sight for Whitney allowed people in the UK to follow Whitney’s story as she underwent cataract surgery in September 2016. Supporters were invited to walk with Whitney over several weeks on her life-changing journey from blindness to sight and support her through prayer.
Supporters learned about Whitney’s struggles at school and home since losing her sight and about her mother's fears and prayers for Whitney's future. They travelled with Whitney from her village to a CBM-supported hospital and met the doctors who carried out sight-saving cataract surgery. And they witnessed her incredible first moments of sight, as she saw her mother’s face again and could walk through the hospital grounds without being guided.
Telling Whitney’s story in “real-time” using digital technology helped our supporters in the UK, thousands of miles away and living in very different circumstances, to get to know Whitney and support her via prayer on her journey.
Globally nearly 1.4 million children are blind, with most living in the world’s poorest places. Shockingly, nearly half of all cases of childhood blindness could be avoided, for example through cataract surgery.
A year after receiving sight-saving surgery Whitney’s mother said, “So much has changed about Whitney. These days she can see. She can wash utensils and I send her to the shops. Even when she plays with others, they don’t leave her like they used to before. She runs with them.”
The Premier Digital Awards seek to celebrate excellence, share best practice and encourage those serving God online. This year’s winners will be announced on 4 November 2017.