top of page

Eye Connect Virtual Conference

Updated: Nov 16, 2022

Over 5 million people a year suffer from eye injury, eye disease, eye genetic deformities, and retinoblastoma. Ultimately they end up losing vision in one or both eyes. More than often this can create a struggle when it comes to self-acceptance and connection.

VIRTUAL CONFERENCE October 8, 2022 8 AM - 2 PM PST

Our mission with the Eye Connect Virtual Conferences is to create a safe space of connection, support, and healing for those impacted by visual impairment. Eye Connect allows others the opportunity to be seen in their true authentic self and come together as a community.


The founder and creator of the brand EYEHESIVE. After a snowboarding accident in 2021 that resulted in the removal of her right eye. Shelby struggled to find a comprehensive resource to guide her through the journey of losing her eye and the prosthetic process that followed. Shelb's vision for this company is to create high-performance adhesive eye patches for all & provide a community for a connection backed by an abundance of resources for support. This community is to share stories of the amazing individuals that have been impacted by visual impairment. These individuals can find strength, support, and hope at EYEHESIVE.

Genell is a trauma-informed International Father & Mother Wound Coach based in Sedona, AZ. The doctors believed the loss of her left eyesight must have been due to an infection from when she was in utero during her mother's pregnancy. Genell has been on a deep healing journey these past few years and is ready to bring more healing, self-love, and awareness to the collectiveness of those who are visually impaired as well!


Hear from 6 prominent speakers within the community. Experience a self-love workshop, meditation, and body movement. You’ll receive a PDF workbook to use during and after the conference. Come connect face to face to find connection, self-love, laughter, healing, and fun. The proceeds will go towards providing more resources for the community. Ultimately helping individuals receive prosthetic eyes and other various eye surgeries.


  • You were involved in a traumatic accident that resulted in the loss of your eye.

  • You are a survivor of Retinoblastoma, Ocular Melanoma, Glaucoma, etc.

  • You had a disease or infection that resulted in the loss of sight in one or both of your eyes.

  • You were born with an underdeveloped eye.

  • You were born without either or only one of your eyes and or blind.

  • You are a caregiver with a child who has an eye prosthetic or is about to go through surgery of their eye being removed.

  • You are an ocularist who is interested in how to better assist your patients emotionally.

  • You are a friend or family member of someone who has experienced any of the above and is looking to better support them in their journey.


  • How to overcome obstacles and challenges while living with a prosthetic(s).

  • How to overcome bullying and self-consciousness at ANY age.

  • How to discover and find self-love within yourself through self-acceptance. (Self-Love Workshop).

  • Cultural stigma, conditioning, and breaking generational trauma patterns.

  • Learn the entire process of how a prosthetic is made, in addition to the importance of looking for the right ocularist.

  • How the prosthetic journey gets better - Tips and tricks for inspiration and creativity on your journey. Pursuing dreams, accomplishing goals, and not giving up despite being visually impaired.

  • The importance of comprehensive eye exams, preventative measures to maintain the remaining eye, etc.


Nav Dhillon is a corporate technology professional who has worked in the financial services and logistics industry. She also happens to be a trauma survivor who lost her eye in a horrific accident when she was only twenty years old. She eventually prioritized her healing after leaving the corporate world and is now a proud advocate of visual disabilities and a mentor to many in her community. She is an ambassador of the Canadian National Institution of the Blind (CNIB) and working on her own foundation to help the blind community globally. Nav holds a BA in Political Science from York University and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto.

Chelsea Langerud is a visually impaired college student. She has been blind in her right eye ever since she was a few months old with limited vision in her left eye. Chelsea's visual impairment stems from a rare genetic disorder that has ultimately led her to have endured nearly 20 eye surgeries in her lifetime. With everything Chelsea does, she aims to include both her experience and her education in order to help create an inclusive and understanding society. Chelsea is a senior at Arizona State University getting a Bachelor of Science in Justice Studies with a minor in Fashion and a certificate in Disability Studies. Disability advocate, writer, and designer.

(Scott Garonzik founder’s son)- Zach Garonzik was born in Boca Raton, Florida. He attended St. Andrews High School and is now studying for his bachelor’s in Finance from Florida Atlantic University. He prides himself on his painting and able-ness to see the colors. He is looking to follow in his father’s footsteps. In his spare time, he enjoys time with his dogs and family in addition to playing tennis and golf on the weekends. He plans on making this business just as successful as his parents did and now his mom (Nicole Garonzik-owner). He is very inspired by his dad and helps the patients out. Their care means the most and he will do whatever is possible to accommodate them. He speaks English and Spanish very well.

Dr. Constadina Manettas was born in Detroit, Michigan. After graduating from the University of Michigan she moved to NYC to attend State University of New York College of Optometry. She graduated with her Doctorate of Optometry in 2020.

Constadina's first job out of school, where she still currently works, is at the Bedford Stuyvesant Family Health Center as the sole Optometrist. Her focus is primary care optometry and the population she serves has a high risk for glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy.

Additionally, she works at Bowery Mission homeless shelters. She visits each of 3 campuses in Manhattan once a month to perform comprehensive eye exams for the program’s clients.

Constadina is able to offer patients at both the shelters and the community health

center free glasses which brings her the most joy.

Constadina has been fascinated by sight from a young age. She truly believes improving someone’s vision is the best way to improve their quality of life. She loves interacting with patients and feels privileged to meet wonderful people every day. Her favorite part of the field is the huge role optometry and eye care can play in public health. She enjoys using her platform on Instagram to spread awareness of the importance of eye care–while having fun! She believes we can all get excited about vision.

When Constadina is not working or advocating for eye health, she enjoys spending her free time visiting museums, attending concerts, and traveling as much as she can.

Jean-Piere Labuschagne was born and raised in South Africa and is currently living In New York City as a full-time model. JP's dream is to inspire people like himself. One-eyed people go through a lot of trauma. JP's goal is to help people overcome society's judgment by helping them accept who they are and become the best versions of themselves. He's a Qualified Personal Trainer, Former International Athlete, Professional Male Model, and Motivational Speaker.

Elisabelle St-Hilaire lost her eye to retinoblastoma when she was 2 years old. Awestruck with the process of how artificial eyes were made, she became an Ocularist. Elisabelle is experimenting with 3D scanning with hopes to push the ocularist profession toward new developments. Aside from work, she enjoys making educational and personal content on TikTok about all things monocular!


Eye Connect Virtual Conference 2022 Schedule

October 8th, 8 AM - 2 PM PST

(Subject to change)

  • Open Ceremony (With the intro of Genell & Shelby) - 15 minutes.

  • Grounding Meditation with Shelby - 5

  • Introduction to the first 3 speakers and what they will be talking about

Reciting a brief intro on each of them before they speak

Speaker #1 JP (30 minutes)

Speaker #2 Chelsea (30 minutes)

Speaker #3 Nav - (30 minutes) Genell (Self Love workshop) (30 minutes)

Get up & Shake/Move - 5 minutes

Break out room session (20 minutes) [split into groups of 3 or 4]

Lunch/Dinner break (30 minutes)

Grounding Meditation (5 minutes)

Introductions of Speakers 4-6 and what they will be talking about.

Reciting a brief intro on each of them before they speak

Speaker #4 Zach (30 minutes)

Speaker #5 Elisabelle (30 minutes)

Speaker #6 Constadina (30 minutes)

Break out room session (20 minutes) [split into different groups of 3 or 4]

  • Closing Ceremony (5 minutes) -

  • FUN TIME!!! Yoga (10 minutes)

  • Q & A - (20 minutes)

We hope to see you at this event please reach out if you have any questions at all!

Reserve your spot today! Use promo code 'Shelby' at check out to receive $10 off your ticket price.

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page