CNN

YouTube superstar MrBeast is making the world clearer – at least to 1,000 people.

The content creator’s latest stunt is paying to remove cataracts for 1,000 people who are blind or blind but can’t afford the surgery.

“We’re curing the blindness of a thousand people,” Mr Beast – real name Jimmy Donaldson – said in Saturday’s video, which had more than 32 million views by Sunday afternoon.

The video shows touching before-and-after images of patients with a clear vision after surgery. YouTube also offered cash donations and other gifts to some participants.

Jeff Levenson, an ophthalmologist and surgeon in Jacksonville, Florida, worked with Donaldson to perform the first round of surgery. Levenson has coordinated the “Gift of Sight” program for more than 20 years, which provides free cataract surgery to uninsured patients who are legally blind due to cataracts.

“Half the blind people in the world are people who need a 10-minute operation,” Levenson said in the video, referring to cataract surgery.

Levenson explained to CNN that he was inspired to help people get cataract surgery after undergoing cataract surgery himself.

“In the days and weeks after my own cataract surgery, I was amazed at how bright and beautiful and bright the world was,” he said. But the thought that there are hundreds of millions, maybe 200 million people worldwide who are blind or blind from cataracts and who don’t get the surgery scares me.

Levenson got a call from a member of Donaldson’s team in September. “I had never heard of MrBeast,” he said. “So I hung up. But thankfully I didn’t hang up.

They started by calling homeless shelters and free clinics in the Jacksonville area to compile a list of patients who needed cataract surgery but couldn’t afford it. Ultimately, they had a group of 40 patients—and Levenson performed all of their surgeries in one day, starting at 7 a.m. and ending at 6 p.m.

Levenson said patients “stop believing that someone wants to save them from blindness and then find the kindness and generosity of spirit to perform the surgery.”

The ophthalmologist connected Donaldson’s group to SEE International, for which he serves as chief medical officer. The charity provides free eye care around the world to patients in need. The organization helped Donaldson deliver a total of 1,000 surgeries to patients over three weeks. The video shows patients in Jamaica, Honduras, Namibia, Mexico, Indonesia, Brazil, Vietnam and Kenya receiving the surgery.

Levenson said he hopes the video and Donaldson’s generosity will encourage a “concerted effort to end unnecessary blindness.”

“If we light MrBeast on fire and get government and private support behind it, we can end half of the blindness in the world,” he said. “Without much cost, and with remarkable advances in human productivity and human potential.”

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