Birmingham, AL -- After tallying nearly 100,000 consumer votes from around the country, Tom’s of Maine announced today that Impact Alabama is among five non-profit organizations that will each receive a $20,000 award through its annual “50 States for Good” initiative.
Of 700 nominations from all 50 states, only 41 finalists were selected by a panel of experts to participate in an online voting competition that determined the five winners, including Impact Alabama. Impact Alabama was the only finalist from Alabama. The finalists were chosen based on use of community volunteers, the feasibility of the project, and the project’s benefit to the community.
This award will support the expansion of Impact Alabama’s FocusFirst Initiative, which provides a cost-effective direct response to the vision problems of children who live in urban and rural areas. Under the supervision of Impact staff, undergraduate and graduate students ensure that children, ages six months to five years, in Head Starts and lower-income daycares are screened for vision problems, using high-tech photo optic scan cameras, and receive subsidized follow-up care through Sight Savers America.
Over 2,000 college students at more than twenty colleges and universities throughout Alabama have participated with FocusFirst. Over the last six years, these students have screened more than 100,000 children in 67 counties across the state, with approximately 11% of the children failing the screenings and receiving subsidized follow-up care as necessary.