After 11.5 years as CEO of Vision 2020 Australia Jennifer Gersbeck is stepping down from the role. During her time at the helm, she has guided the organisation to the place that it is today, as the credible and respected national peak body for eye health and vision care. She reflects on her time with the organisation, the importance of collaboration and the next part of her journey as she continues to advocate for the elimination of avoidable blindness.
We’re often told that governments strongly support this initiative or that program, but sometimes it is hard to know exactly what that means.
Last week hundreds of members of the global low vision community converged in Melbourne for the 11th International Conference on Low Vision.
This year has been an eventful and productive one for the sector. The lead up to the Federal Election was an opportune time to come together as a sector and bolster advocacy efforts, and the success of this collaboration can be seen in the many highlights throughout 2013.
This year, together with our members, Vision 2020 Australia has continued to keep eye health and vision care on the public agenda and foster support among key members of parliament.
Jess Gallagher and I arrived home on Sunday, 21 October after an eventful week in Vietnam! Arriving in Ho Chi Minh City on Saturday (13/10) was an assault on our senses — smells, sounds and sights. After being picked up by Phoung (Brien Holden Vision Institute) we checked into our hotel and headed out for dinner. Jess tried everything — I didn’t! After a quick look around the city, we headed to Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province, a three hour drive south-west towards the sea.
My trip here to Vietnam with Vision 2020 Australia has already been an incredible one and we are only at day three. I have been able to experience firsthand the amazing work that has been achieved and I am incredibly excited for this journey to continue.
Last Thursday was an extra special day here at Vision 2020 Australia. Not only did we celebrate World Sight Day (WSD) with our friends across the world but we also had the opportunity to recognise the decade of dedication our Chair, the Hon Dr Barry Jones AO, has given to preventing avoidable blindness and vision loss.
On Friday I was interviewed by Geraldine Coutts from Radio Australia on the growing concern over Australia's foreign aid budget. I believe Australia has an opportunity to transform the lives of millions and really make an impact on reducing global poverty. I hope the Government shares that vision and keeps its commitment to increasing foreign aid.
Jennifer Gersbeck has been CEO of Vision 2020 Australia for over seven years. In her first blog post she reflects on this time and how she is continually inspired.