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half Helen Foundation

Cause Area

  • Children & Youth
  • Health & Medicine

Location

7801 N Lamar BlvdUnit F34Austin, TX 78752 United States

Organization Information

Mission Statement

To improve school-age children's vision through an innovative delivery of care.

Description

half Helen Founder and Executive Director, Chelsea Elliott, learned that she was blind in her left eye and deaf in her right ear during school-based screenings. After studying Helen Keller in 4th grade, Chelsea declared, "I’m half blind and half deaf, I’m half Helen!" The nickname has come to define her life’s work. Using her college graduation money, Chelsea founded half Helen.

At half Helen, we believe clear eyesight is a basic human right. Since our launch in 2013, we have screened more than 55,000 children for vision impairment. In 2019, recognizing that families weren’t able to access treatment for their child’s vision impairment, we began providing comprehensive eye exams and prescription glasses through clinics that popped up in schools. In 2021, we finished construction of optical Prime, a 32-foot mobile eye clinic, which replaced our pop-up exam clinics and allowed us to take action and serve the entire family, not just children. Today, optical Prime visits schools during the school year and is stationed at local health centers on Fridays and during the summer months to serve uninsured adults.

With a cost effective and scalable solution, we are committed to meeting the needs of Central Texas for years to come.

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