MALVERN – When Malvern resident Netanya Sortland jumped from the top of a 10-story building in Lancaster a year ago, she hoped other Chester County residents would go with her.
So she once again asks Chester County residents to metaphorically come along with her to the edge when she makes the second jump.
Sortland’s jump was to jump from the Holiday Inn in central Lancaster to raise money for an organization called VisionCorp that helped her after she started losing her sight.
The descent is part of VisionCorp’s annual EyeDrop, its largest fundraiser this year. Last year, about 70 people took part in the jumps from the 10-story Holiday Inn.
“VisionCorps is a leading nonprofit organization in Pennsylvania that aims to empower people who are blind or visually impaired to achieve independence. This is done through rehabilitation, prevention and education services, as well as employment of blind people in manufacturing, food industry and administrative services, ”the website says.
Sortland began to lose her sight after the stroke. At first, everything became blurred, and she had double vision. Over time, her eyesight deteriorated. She started cutting and burning her hands while cooking. She was almost hit by a car. It became impossible to read her mail.
She sought medical help when her eyesight deteriorated, but Chester County had few resources to help visually impaired people relearn their daily routines.
Someone then told her about VisionCorp. The help they received changed everything for her.
VisonCorp teamed her up with someone who was able to help her relearn many daily chores.
“She told me,‘ Whatever questions you have. I’ll find the answer and we’ll figure it out. There’s nothing we can’t figure out together. ” And it wasn’t just the help they provided. I was taught this attitude. “
When she applied to VisonCorp, they had just started working in Chester County.
The first time she was asked to attend an EyeDrop event, Sortland refused. But then, when she was told the organization wanted to put more effort into working with people in Chester County, she wanted to get involved.
According to Sortland, about 70 people attended the EyeDrop event last year, but she was the only person from Chester County. All others were from four other counties serving VisionCorp.
The fundraising was the same. While Chester County residents contributed about $ 3,500, the other four counties raised about $ 160,000.
That’s why she wants to be more active in Chester County.
Like last year, Sortland plans to change into Lady Liberty because, she said, “VisionCorp has given me back my freedom”.
Because VisionCorps does not charge for its services and receives limited government funding, it relies heavily on donations. The event, Eye Drop 2022, raises awareness and funding to help support free services for people from birth to the elderly, the blind and visually impaired.
The event takes place at the Holiday Inn, 26 E. Chestnut St., Lancaster, on Friday, June 10, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For information on donations, go to https://give.visioncorps.net/fundraiser/3674069.
For more information on the EyeDrop event, visit www.EyeDrop2022.org.