August 30, 2022 – Collinsville Community Unit School District #10 Special Education Department’s Christy Way was selected to receive Eye Thrive’s 2022 Partner of the Year Award in recognition of her dedicated service to ensure Collinsville students get needed eye care.
Eye Thrive provides mobile vision clinics at St. Louis metro schools and community organizations. CUSD 10 has partnered with Eye Thrive for several years to provide free eye exams and free glasses to students K-6 who are in need.
Last year, 394 CUSD 10 students were provided free glasses. According to Eye Thrive, Christy Way was instrumental in scheduling and communicating with students, parents and staff to make the program beneficial to CUSD 10 students.
The Eye Thrive Partner of the Year award is provided to an individual or organization that has gone above and beyond to ensure kids have the essential vision services they need to thrive, both inside and outside of the classroom.
“CUSD 10 is a vital Eye Thrive partner,” said Eye Thrive Vision Screener Tia Cook, “Collinsville was the second school district to launch our Vision Screening Program. When we began contemplating nominees among program staff, there was a resounding consensus over who the recipient should be.
“Christy helped Eye Thrive identify what worked, what didn’t, and fine tune the process for our wraparound services,” continued Cook, “We are going into our fourth school year together. Collinsville is one of our biggest and most successful school partnerships. Last school year, 85% of kids that received an eye exam on our Mobile Vision Clinic needed glasses.”
Eye Thrive estimates, in total, Christy Way helped provide 2,753 vision screenings, 462 eye exams and 599 pairs of glasses.
Cook added: “Christy made sure every teacher in the building knew Eye Thrive was coming and was ready for our arrival, even calling every single teacher to confirm the timing worked for their classroom. Christy called parents to ensure consent forms got signed and returned, more than doubling our initial return rate. Christy stayed one step ahead on Mobile Vision Clinic days, and had students ready to go on-board so that the highest number could be seen and everything ran smoothly.
“Most importantly, Christy is positive and sets a tone that resonates with our mission – to provide an exceptional experience and make sure our kids have what they need. We could not have put glasses on 394 children in the district last school year without Christy’s efforts.”
Collinsville CUSD 10 Head Nurse Lisa Sabatino said, “Thank You, Eye Thrive, for honoring what we see in Christy every day. And thank you, Christy, for all that you do for CUSD 10.”
Way will be honored and officially receive her Eye Thrive Partner of the Year award at the group’s Spectacle gala on Friday, September 23, 2022 at The Coronado in St. Louis.
Eye Thrive is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Their mission is to remove the barriers of access and expense that prevent low-income children from getting glasses. Since 2013, Eye Thrive has conducted more than 23,000 eye exams and dispensed more than 27,000 pairs of glasses to children in the St. Louis region through their state-of-the-art mobile vision clinics and school screening program.