Lucky Aziken is an exceptional Optometrist working to provide sustainable access to quality and affordable eye care services in neglected communities. He is the Founder of several initiatives: Vision Care Givers International, a frontline Non-profit promoting eye health, health education and community development. VCGi Health Systems Ltd, a social enterprise running a network of eye clinics, Vision Hub Academy, a virtual platform providing mentoring to young visionary leaders, emedisar.com, an online medical information and artificial intelligence platform and recently, COVID-19 Mission to Prisons, advocating for better health of inmates in correctional facilities in Nigeria.
He is a Commonwealth Scholar, Mandela Washington fellow, LEAP Africa fellow and One Young World Ambassador, serving as the chairman of the One Young World Healthcare local and global working group.
It all started in 2006 when armed robbers attacked Lucky’s home and his father was shot in the face. He got prompt medical care but was unable to access quality eye care anywhere in their community. Painfully, he lost his eyes to post-traumatic raised intraocular pressure that was completely avoidable. Following the experience, Lucky decided to become an Optometrist and dedicate his professional life to fight blindness and provide sustainable access to quality eye care for people. He began volunteering for several health initiatives providing eye care services to the marginalised population. He led the eye care team of Rural Africa Health Initiative (RAHI) serving over 6,000 rural dwellers. In 2016, he founded Vision Care Givers International initiative (VCGi), a non-profit with an audacious dream to provide quality and affordable eye care services in every nation. Under his leadership, VCGi has provided access to quality eye care in 35 communities in Nigeria, reaching over 10,000 patients and established 4 eye clinics. In 2018, he launched the Prevent Blindness Africa aimed to tackle the major barriers to eye care in the continent. Subsequently, he led a medical mission trip to Dzaleka Refugee Camp in Malawi, providing quality access to eye care for refugees (https://presidentialprecinct.org/precinct-alumni-preventing-blindness-across-africa/) and launched project riverine aimed to provide access to eye care in riverine communities (https://youtu.be/Sqi-69N2CQw).
At the onslaught of the COVID-19 Pandemic, Lucky started a mobile eye clinic, providing essential services and drugs to patients in their homes. He worked with the 4SD team to provide global direction for countries to create COVID-ready states. (https://www.4sd.info/reflections/the-3-ps-of-a-covid-ready-world/) and launched the COVID-19 Mission to Prisons advocating for the protection of inmates from the pandemic (https://presidentialprecinct.org/ensuring-rights-to-health-for-prisoners-in-nigeria/)
“Nothing hurts like seeing a loved one become blind and everyone is helpless. I know the feeling and I believe it can be avoided if we stood up for the vulnerable and neglected in our societies. I wake up daily with a sense of responsibility to ensure no one is needlessly blind and I am excited when I am able to create sustainable access to quality eye care in underserved communities. Quality eye care must be everywhere as long as I live.”
– Lucky Aziken