• Midwest Center for Childhood Glaucoma and Cataracts

    Welcome to the Midwest Center for Childhood Glaucoma and Cataracts (MCCGC), located in the greater Chicagoland area. We are a non-profit organization that strives to lend support and give voice to families who have endured, and who continue to endure, these life-altering childhood diseases.

  • Mission

    The mission of MCCGC is to create a forum for the parents of children who have been diagnosed with glaucoma and cataracts, in hopes of providing these families with a support network premised on shared experience. In its earliest inception, MCCGC emerged out of a belief that giving children – the patients themselves – a way of connecting (through conferences, activities and the like) was an invaluable tool in treating these diseases.MCCGC has four specific goals to accomplish its mission:




    To create an in-person and online community for parents and family members of children with pediatric glaucoma and cataracts.


    Educational Support


    To provide direct support to the children affected with this disease as they navigate the educational system.




    To promote awareness through education and advocacy in medical and non-medical environments.




    To design and implement innovative research aimed at better understanding and treating pediatric glaucoma and cataracts.

  • Advocacy

    For the children

    One specific aim of MCCGC was inspired by a parent wanting a better understanding of her child's disease from the teacher, the classmates, and the school. MCCGC will advocate for the child in school by ensuring that each child obtains an individualized education plan (IEP) while promoting compassion from teachers and classmates.

    For the families

    We intend to make this group of diseases more recognizable in our community--both at the pediatrician's office, and at the neighborhood block party. Stay tuned for specific advocacy programming.

  • Events

    Family Gathering - May 19, 2024

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    Family Gathering 2024

    Please join us on Sunday, May 19th for a full family gathering! All parents, children, and siblings are welcome. We have a fun-filled day planned with activities for the kids and a special guest speaker for parents.


    Our speaker is Dr. Kay Ferrell. She is the author of "Reach Out and Teach". We found her book inspiring, and we are excited for her to share her wisdom with us all!


    Event Details:

    When: Sunday, May 19th at 10:30AM

    Location: Center for Independence

    100 W. Plainfield Rd, Countryside, IL 60525


    Please RSVP to mccgcfoundation@gmail.com with the number of people attending so we can account for food and supplies. We look forward to seeing you all there

  • Research

    Our ongoing research projects strive to improve outcomes, identify disease at early stages, and develop innovative therapies for treating childhood glaucoma and cataracts.

    Upcoming Research

    Glaucoma has seen vast improvements in drugs and their delivery and surgical techniques in the last decade. Concurrently, new innovations in cataract removal have changed standards of care. Both areas are promising for the pediatric population, and we intend to research and innovate to improve surgical outcomes and medical treatment.

  • Donate

    One hundred percent of donations will go towards MCCGC and its mission to provide support to families and children afflicted by these diseases.

    Donations will provide educational tools and resources, advocacy materials, and will foster research endeavors.* Please help us to support our patients and their families!

    *All donations are tax deductible under IRC 170 based on 501(c)(3) status.

  • Board of Directors

    Meet our Board of Directors!

    Javaneh Abbasian, M.D.

    President and Founder

    Javaneh Abbasian, M.D. is the President and founder of MCCGC. She is a pediatric and general ophthalmologist practicing in Chicago at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the Jesse Brown Veterans Affairs Medical Center. A Chicago native who has lived in the Midwest her entire life (with the exception of a short stint in Pennsylvania for her fellowship at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia), Dr. Abbasian has demonstrated throughout her career a passionate commitment to the families and patients with childhood glaucoma and cataracts. Through this foundation, Dr. Abbasian hopes to cultivate for these families a community to call their own, and to promote meaningful advancement in the field through research and education.

    Kimberlee Curnyn, M.D.


    Kimberlee Curnyn, M.D. is a co-founder of MCCGC. She is a pediatric and general ophthalmologist practicing in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago. She trained in the Midwest at Notre Dame and University of Illinois at Chicago and completed her fellowship at University of Illinois at Chicago. In her dual role as assistant professor at UIC and visiting professor at Lurie Children’s Hospital, Dr. Curnyn mentors residents and fellows, helping to shape the next generation of dedicated, empathic and forward-thinking ophthalmologists. Over the course of her 25 year career, Dr. Curnyn has developed a niche practice around pediatric glaucoma and cataracts. She has volunteered for numerous international medical mission trips, and she devotes her time and energy to improving patient care and education for the next generation of ophthalmologists.

    Valerie Kattouf, O.D.


    Valerie Katouf, O.D. is the Chief of the Pediatric and Binocular Vision Center at the Illinois College of Optometry/Illinois Eye Institute, located in Chicago’s south side. She is a graduate of ICO and residency trained in pediatric eye disease at SUNY College of Optometry in New York. Since her residency, Dr. Katouf has learned first-hand the critical importance of treating not only the patient, but also the family members in order to combat the effects of pediatric eye disease and work towards optimal visual development. She is a skilled optometrist, revered educator and tireless volunteer of her time on behalf of academic conferences, lectureships and non-profit organizations.

  • The Blog

    Thoughts, musings, and ruminations.

    April 11, 2023
    Happy Spring! Mark your calendars for a Parent Only Event on Saturday, April 29th from 9:30am-11:00am at the UIC Subspeciality Care Building.   Address: UIC Subspecialty Care Building (SCB) 2nd Floor Conference Room 1009 S. Wood Street Chicago, IL 60612   There will be guides at...
    We are finally gathering again for a Parent & Child Event! Mark your calendars for 9:00am on Saturday, August 6th at Pleasantdale Elementary School. Address: 8100 School Avenue, LaGrange, IL. Please RSVP to mccgcfoundation@gmail.com with the number of children and adults attending. We...
    October 9, 2020
    All, First and foremost, we hope you and your loved ones are doing well! We wanted to share a wonderful set of books written to help children become more comfortable wearing contacts, glasses and patches. The author is Juliette Vignola, a mother whose child was born with a cataract in one...
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  • Contact Us

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    MCCGC Page





    Mailing Address


    MCCGC Foundation

    PO Box 4551

    Oak Park, IL 60304