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Optometry Alumnus recognised for eyecare mission work across the globe

15 September 2023

Lucky Chukwudi Aziken

School of Optometry and Vision Sciences student Lucky Chukwudi Aziken (MSc 2023) was one alumnus to win special recognition at Cardiff University’s 30(ish) Awards.

Cardiff University’s 30(ish) Awards celebrated the achievements of alumni who have made a positive contribution to their community before turning 30 years old.

Lucky was the recipient of the 'Health and Wellbeing' award for his outstanding work and mission to provide affordable eyecare services in neglected communities in Africa and across the globe.

Lucky's story

In 2006, armed robbers attacked Lucky’s home and his father was shot in the face. Despite prompt medical care, he was unable to access quality eyecare which meant he unfortunately lost his sight.

This drove Lucky to begin volunteering for several health initiatives and led the eye care team of Rural Africa Health Initiative (RAHI). In 2016, Lucky founded the Vision Care Givers International initiative (VCGi), a non-profit with a mission to provide eyecare services in every nation.

Under his leadership, VCGi provided access to primary eyecare to over 21,250 people in Nigeria and Malawi with educational materials reaching over 2 million people. In 2018, he also launched Prevent Blindness Africa.

During the pandemic, Lucky started a mobile eye clinic, providing essential services to patients in their homes. He worked with the 4SD team to provide global direction and launched the COVID-19 Mission to prisons, advocating for the protection of inmates. He is also a Commonwealth Scholar, Mandela Washington fellow, LEAP Africa fellow, and One Young World Ambassador.

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