HBI, Atrium Health’s WakeECHO and Community Partner to Restore Visions to Hundreds of Hondurans

Surgery brigade creates comfort for people of Honduras – restoring the eyesight of nearly 200 patients.
Mar 8, 2023 11:25 AM ET

Originally published on HBI Sustains.com

HanesBrands partnered with Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Hospital, WakeECHO Global Ophthalmology and Hospital del Ojo Club de Leones Fraternidad in San Pedro Sula to perform cataract surgeries and corneal transplants.

The project, funded by HBI, supported a specialized medical team of 13 doctors and nurses to facilitate almost 200 life-changing procedures for Honduran patients, some of them HBI associates and their families. Eleven patients received corneal transplants. Honduras has no organ bank, so the brigade is critical for these patients.

“It is important that our involvement in this brigade went beyond financial assistance,” said Alma Ariño, Corporate Social Responsibility Manager for HanesBrands in Honduras. “Sixty HBI associates volunteered their time to help with logistics, translate for the patients and offer comfort to people about to undergo surgery.”

The team at WakeECHO has a 25-year history of leading eye surgery brigades, overcoming barriers to provide quality surgical and clinical eye care to the developing world.

“We were so happy to partner with HanesBrands on this project,” said Kyle Coffey, Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine and Founding CEO of WakeECHO Global Ophthalmology. “Hanes has the manpower, profile and local knowledge to reach many more people and improve many more lives.”

“We had a young, married man with three children, including seven-year-old twins,” Alma said. “He lost his eyesight due to diabetes and was completely blind for four months, not knowing how to navigate the world; he was terrified to move and felt stuck in a black hole. Then, only a day after the procedure, he could see again. We feel honored to help change his life and the life of his family.”

This mission is a part of our ambitious goal to improve the lives of 10 million people by 2030.

HBI has been proud to operate in Honduras for over 30 years, employing more than 5,000 associates.

Check out the video above to learn more.