It was a case of Moorfields-meets-Crufts as eight dogs joined hundreds of Moorfields Eye Charity supporters taking part in Eye to Eye last Sunday.
While the event entered its third year, it was the first year that dogs took part and our four-legged friends took a starring role as the dogs, three of which were guide dogs, donned Eye to Eye t-shirts and received considerable attention from their fellow walkers and spectators.
Funds raised through Eye to Eye go towards Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust’s pioneering research into eye disorders. The event is expected to raise over £150,000 which will go towards areas of eye research such as glaucoma, the leading cause of irreversible blindness worldwide, and age-related macular degeneration, which is the leading cause of blindness in adults aged over 60 in the western world. In the three years since Eye to Eye began, donations raised have helped support vital research projects, including studies exploring the genetics of keratoconus and the impact of diabetic retinopathy on the structure and function of the eye.
Mervyn Walker, Moorfields Eye Charity chair and Eye to Eye participant, said:
We have been delighted by the enthusiastic response from Moorfields staff, members and patients to this event, as we strive to raise more money for the hospital’s pre-eminent research programme. Last year I ran the 14 mile route so this year I decided to walk it with supporters and colleagues. Everyone was in great spirits and it was nice to be able to meet and personally thank the other walkers for their fantastic support.
David Probert, chief executive of Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Eye to Eye participant, said:
I thoroughly enjoyed my first Eye to Eye walk and was bowled over by how passionate and energetic everyone was - despite the grey weather. It was great to speak to staff, patients and their loved ones while exploring the sights of London. My thanks and congratulations go to Moorfields Eye Charity for all their hard work with the event and their continued support for the trust’s research projects. Eye to Eye is a brilliant event and I look forward to taking part again next year.
Photos from the event can be found on our Facebook page.
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Moorfields Eye Charity supports the work of Moorfields Eye Hospital and its research partner, the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, making a difference for patients at the hospital and for people with sight problems around the world. It raises money to help the hospital provide the best possible care for its patients, educate the researchers and clinicians of tomorrow and support leading edge research that aims to develop new treatments for blinding diseases.
Since Eye to Eye 2016, the charity has awarded over £1.3 million through its regular grant funding programmes to support the highest quality research. Areas of research supported are: glaucoma; macular degeneration; diabetic related disease; retinal disease; corneal disease; genetic eye diseases; cataracts; ocular cancer; ocular inflammation. The type of research also varies from laboratory-based investigations into mechanisms of disease to clinically-focused studies such as developing and testing novel ways to carry out vision tests and take measurements from patients of all ages with a range of eye conditions.