Run for Retina Research finishes final leg of the race

The annual event has raised more than $600,000 for the Ivey Eye Institute

After pouring their heart and ‘sole’ into Run for Retina Research, race organizers Kim and Paul Spriet put on their fundraising shoes for the final time during the 20th annual Run for Retina on Sunday, April 16, 2023.

“We’ve had an incredible time raising funds for a cause that is so close to our hearts, but it’s time to close this chapter for us,” said Kim, who was diagnosed with a genetic eye disorder leaving her legally blind. “To raise awareness on the importance of eye research and have the community come together every year has been a humbling and equally rewarding experience for us."

Close to 800 runners have signed up for this year’s race. To make the final year extra special, Kim and Paul Spriet have committed to matching donations raised in this year’s event to further support the iCure project which will see the expansion of existing space within the Ivey Eye Institute at St. Joseph’s Hospital to create a highly specialized unit to fast-track patients who need urgent eye care.

“Kim and Paul Spriet have been invaluable in their efforts to raise funds to help others with vision issues,” said St. Joseph’s Health Care Foundation President and CEO Michelle Campbell. “We are so grateful to the Spriets’ – and to everyone who has participated, volunteered and sponsored the Run for Retina event over the last two decades.”

Thousands of people in our region suffer from genetic retina eye disorders. The retina is the delicate tissue that lines the back of the eye and issues like Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD), Diabetic Retinopathy and Retinal Tears are the leading causes of blindness in Canada. Thankfully, research into early detection and treatment can cure or prevent further deterioration.

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