To tell the story of Boston Foundation for Sight I connected with Kendra, a hopeful patient coming to the center for restored eyesight.

Kendra opened up so much to me during this very personal experience that I decided to focus on her alone. It was a remarkable experience to be in the room with her when she could see and was painless for the first time. She told me she is grateful that her journey was recorded and that it is used to raise awareness about the foundation.

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Close your eyes. Now, open them. Notice anything? Probably not. Now imagine that your inner eyelids are coated with sandpaper – blink.

For those who survive Stephen Johnson Syndrome, their eyes are left scarred and inflamed with corneal blisters and perforation which can lead to permanent vision loss.

SJS is a rare disorder commonly triggered by a drug allergy that affects 2.6 per million people per year. It causes inflammation of the skin and mucous membranes; just imagine your entire internal and external body coated in blisters.

Sixteen days after taking a medication, Kendra Schmidt was diagnosed with SJS. She spent three months in the hospital surviving 3rd degree burns covering her entire body and multiple severe infections. When she was released from the hospital, her eyes were so damaged that she could hard see. After numerous ineffective surgeries and contact lenses, Kendra conceded to a life in pain and darkness.

Eventually, she found the Boston Foundation for Sight. Dr. Prerry Rosenthal invented a unique sight-restoring contact lens for people visually disabled by corneal diseases. He created the 501 (c)(3) nonprofit to provide this technology to all who can benefit regardless of their ability to pay or where they live.

This is Kendra’s journey through her final attempt to restore her sight, and reclaim her life.

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