The Marshalltown Public Library is partnering with local Lions members through the Iowa KidSight program to offer a free vision screening for preschoolers on Wednesday.
The free screening, which involves taking a photograph each child's eyes with a special camera, will take place after the 9:30 a.m. storytime about eyes and glasses (featuring a glasses craft). An additional after-school screening time is also being offered the same day from 4 to 5 p.m. in the blue activity room in the corner of the youth area.
This free vision screening is for children ages 6 months to 48 months and is a joint project of the Lions Clubs of Iowa and the University of Iowa Children's Hospital. Robert and Diane Maile, who are local Lions members, are very committed to this program because each of them had trouble in their younger years seeing the blackboard in school.
Pictured is the the display of books about eyes and eyeglasses currently at the library. Free vision screenings for children 6 to 48 months will tak place April 6 at the Marshalltown Public Library.
"We feel that it is important for children to have the best vision possible to aid in their learning years and for the rest of their lives," said Robert Maile.
Youth services librarian, Joa LaVille, said. "Undiagnosed vision problems have been a common reason that children have trouble in school and with early reading," said LaVille, who added that her own grandson, Jacob, benefited from the free vision screening when the Lions Club visited Tiger Tots.
"None of us had any idea that he had one eye that was not working well," she said.
Jacob has worn glasses since he was 3 years old, which is expected to strengthen his eye.
This partnership with the library and the Lions Club is intended to reach some of the children who have not been reached through their preschool or daycare center. The results of this quick and easy screening are evaluated by specialists at the University of Iowa Children's Hospital and parents are contacted with the results.
A parental consent form is needed to participate in the screening. If a caregiver other than the legal guardian is bringing the child to the screening, a form can be picked up at the youth desk at the library ahead of time for a parent to sign and send with the child.
For more information about this free screening, please call the library at 641-754-5738, ext. 3.