A Vision of Hope for the Inner City


A group photo before the ribbon cutting of the new vision clinic a Hope for the Inner City.

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF)- Vision care is a critical medical need that many in our community don’t have consistent access to.

A new clinic in Avondale is hoping to change that. The organization, Hope for the Inner City, along with the Lions Club and a generous donation from the Jack and Charlotte Frost Foundation, unveiled their new vision clinic.

This clinic will provide vision care for those in need in the community. About $30,000 in equipment was purchased for the new center. They were inspired by another volunteer medical clinic.

The executive director for Hope for the Inner City, Anthony Watkins, said, “Remote Area Medical came in, and the Lions Club doing vision, and what that organization does, there was a connection there, and that’s how the conversation started about having a vision clinic here at Hope.”

The clinic consists of a waiting and examination room. Those who are determined to need glasses or other vision needs will be able to receive them. The clinic was celebrated with a ceremony of guests of honor including Congressman Chuck Fleischmann.

Representative Fleischmann said, “Let’s face it. Right now we’re in a very, very difficult position. There’s no question about it. There’s divisions out there, there’s a lot of needs out there. But these are the glimmers of hope that we have.”

For Mr. Watkins, this is a step towards continuing to fight poverty throughout Chattanooga. He said that, “You know we’re trying to develop trust in our community, there’s a lot of needs out there. And a lot of the time people are skeptical, we’re here to serve them, and if they know what we do, they can come in and see us. It’s not what we say, it comes down to what we are able to do for them. So our actionable things such as the Vision Clinic will make a change, and at that point, when they trust and get to know us, and if we get to know our neighbors, we’ll love on each other a whole lot more.”

The vision clinic is expected to be open in January with at least one day of service a week, with hopes that the clinic can be open more days a week as more optometrists agree to serve in the program.

In addition to the vision clinic, Hope for the Inner City has food distribution services, bill assistance programs, and a dental clinic.

For more information on Hope for the Inner City, visit their website at https://www.wearehfic.org/.

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Hamilton County, Local News