The StrongerTogether photo competition attracted a lot of quality submissions from around the world; each with a story to tell. We will be sharing some of these stories on our blog over the coming weeks. The first in the series is about the Eye Care Foundation’s run for charity, with pictures and inputs by Lia Marmelstein-de Koning—thank you Lia!
Jeffrey van Haastrecht at the Dam tot Damloop run/ Photo courtesy: Lia Marmelstein-de Koning
Jeffrey van Haastrecht was a 23- year-old sous-chef when he lost his vision to Leber optic atrophy, a genetic condition. “Within two months I went from being able to see 100% to a vision of 5%. Unfortunately, I see nothing but light and dark. My eyes are fine, but the images are not passed on to my brain", Jeffrey says.
Despite having to give up on his dream of being a soccer player, Jeffrey hasn’t let his condition dampen his enthusiasm for life. Being athletic and staying fit are essential to him. So, he and his friend Thara Philippi began to run in March 2016.