Joining forces to tackle the blindness crisis.
YOU CAN GIVE THE GIFT OF SIGHT TO CHILDREN AND ADULTS IN AFRICA- NOW AND FOR GENERATIONS TO COME
Four leading global eye health organizations are joining forces to scale up eye health across Africa, to improve access to services for all, strengthen eye health systems and reduce avoidable blindness.
An estimated 20 million people across Africa are blind or visually impaired, more than 75% of which is completely avoidable. Vision loss is devastating for families, communities and economies – affecting children’s access to education, people’s ability to provide for their families, and placing a burden on health systems. The World Health Organization projects that population growth, aging, and disease-related eye conditions will triple the rate of global blindness. This is an urgent problem that needs an immediate solution.
Vision 4 Africa is a consortium of the four largest global eye health organizations: Orbis International, CBM, Sightsavers, and the Fred Hollows Foundation. We share a commitment to preventing the tripling of global blindness- and we have the expertise, and experience to do just that.
Together we have already: reduced the rate of blindness globally, and eliminated blinding trachoma in dozens of districts in Ethiopia.
Our proposed solution will build a strong and sustainable eye care system. It will build national health systems capable of delivering eye health solutions to an additional 100 million people in need.
We will focus on the two leading causes of blindness: cataract (including congenital cataract) and Refractive Error. We will bring services closer to the people who need them- in schools and in communities.
We will screen the eyes of 17 million people by expanding community and primary level services. We will provide over 380,000 sight-restoring cataract surgeries by bringing services closer to the people who need them. And we will provide glasses to 270,000 people, including school children, through stronger optical services and school health programs.
Restoring sight to one individual goes far beyond the moment when treatment is provided. It means regaining dignity, independence and opportunity – it frees family members (particularly women and girls) from day-to-day caregiving, it opens doors to community engagement, and it unburdens social welfare systems of costly services. Efforts to prevent blindness are simple, fast and life changing, and they are among the most cost effective in the world.
Who We Are
Orbis is a leading global non-governmental organization that has been a pioneer in the prevention and treatment of avoidable blindness for nearly four decades. Orbis transforms lives by delivering the skills, resources and knowledge needed to deliver accessible quality eye care. Working in collaboration with local partners, including hospitals, universities, government agencies and ministries of health, Orbis provides hands-on ophthalmology training, strengthens healthcare infrastructure and advocates for the prioritization of eye health on public health agendas. Orbis operates the world's only Flying Eye Hospital, a fully accredited ophthalmic teaching hospital on board an MD-10 aircraft, and an award-winning telemedicine platform, Cybersight.
Fred Hollows Foundation
The Fred Hollows Foundation is a not-for-profit international development organization established in Australia in 1992. The Foundation works in more than 25 countries and has restored sight to more than 2.5 million people. The Fred Hollows Foundation believes in a world where no person is needlessly blind or vision impaired. We work around the world so that no one is left behind. Our priority is to work with communities to improve their own eye health. We do this through life-changing surgeries and treatments, training doctors and health workers, generating new ideas, and pushing for change at all levels – from local to global.
Sightsavers works in over 30 countries across Africa and South Asia to prevent avoidable blindness and fight for disability rights.
Sightsavers’ vision is a world where no one is blind from avoidable causes and where people with visual impairments participate equally in society. Our ultimate strategic aim is for governments to ensure that good quality, affordable eye care is available to all people as an integral part of wider health systems. We protect sight by providing eye operations for people who need them, and training eye care workers and surgeons to provide sight-saving treatment. Through community volunteers, we also distribute medication to protect people from blinding diseases in some of the world’s poorest countries. Since 1950, we have supported visual screening for more than 180 million people, carried out over 10 million operations to restore sight and trained more than eight thousand professional eye health workers.
CBM is a Christian International Development organization, committed to improving the quality of life of people with disabilities in the poorest communities of the world irrespective of race, gender or religious belief. Based on its core values and over 100 years of professional expertise, CBM addresses poverty both as a cause and as a consequence of disability, and works in partnership with local and national civil society organizations to create an inclusive society for all. Applying a disability-inclusive development approach, we address the barriers that hinder access and participation and actively seek to ensure the full participation of people with disabilities as empowered self-advocates in all development and emergency response processes. Through our Inclusive Eye Health Initiative, CBM builds on its long-standing expertise in reducing avoidable visual impairment and blindness. We make sure that people who are permanently affected can access support and opportunities.