José Francia Fuentes, 80, is a poet from Lima, Peru. He writes poems of all varieties, but he is better known for his political and patriotic compositions.
José Francia arrived at Divino Nino Jesus with a cataract in his left eye. As a child, he had problems in his right eye. The impairment required surgery, but the surgery left a scar, which permanently impaired his vision. Therefore, when a cataract took sight from his left eye, he was scared to have it fixed.
Through an outreach coordinator at his local church, he heard about a cataract screening camp. When he agreed to attend, both the outreach nurse from Divino Nino Jesus (DNJ) and the church coordinator reassured José that the clinic would be clean and safe. Eventually, he agreed to get
the procedure done. Without being able to see, José Francia could not write and therefore, his ability to do his most cherished work was increasingly being compromised.
When José Francia returns to the clinic the next day for his post-op appointment, he is on fire — reciting poems, explaining to anyone who will listen how happy he is to be able to see again, and how miserable he had been, having to keep all his thoughts in his own head for so long. He says he is so grateful for the gift of being able to return to writing his poetry again.