Sightsavers works to combat blindness in developing countries, restoring sight through specialist treatment and eye care. They also support people who are irreversibly blind by providing education, counselling and training. They help the people who need it most - those living in poverty in some of the world's poorest countries.
Working with their partners in 2010, they helped to:
Protect over 23 million people against river blindness
Perform over 270,000 sight-restoring cataract operations
Treat over a million people with antibiotics for trachoma
Where They Work
HOW THEY HELP
PREVENTION AND CURE
Sightsavers works to both cure people who have reversible eye conditions and prevent people from becoming needlessly blind. One of the key ways of doing this is by training local eye care experts and volunteers.
Curing blindness. Although cataract is found all over the world, getting treatment for it is much more difficult in developing countries, and it affects children as well as adults.
Preventing blindness. Millions of people are still going needlessly blind in the developing world from preventable diseases such as river blindness and trachoma, and in children, Vitamin A deficiency.
Training eye care workers. One of the most challenging aspects of eye care is the severe shortage of trained staff. Since the 1980s, Sightsavers has been tackling the shortage of eye care personal by working with local partners to train staff at all levels.
WORKING WITH BLINDNESS
Sightsavers is working to provide people who are irreversibly blind with the skills to live a more independent life.
Rehabilitation. Teaching basic daily living skills is one of the key ways of enabling people who are irreversibly blind to live with some kind of independence.
Social inclusion. People who are blind or have low vision can easily become isolated from their community. This is because they generally find it harder to get employment, to attend school, or to take part in day-to-day community activities.
Tools and technology. In order for people who are blind to live life to the full as equal and participating members of society, they may need access to certain tools to help them do so. Providing these is an important part of our work.
Sightsavers supports the principle of inclusive education. This is where children who have a disability such as being blind or visually impaired are included in the mainstream education system.
Learning and blindness. Sightsavers supports the principle of inclusive education. This is where children who have a disability such as being blind or visually impaired are included in the mainstream education system.
Working with teachers. Sightsavers works with local partners to ensure that children who are blind or visually impaired are included in mainstream schools. Yet in order for inclusive education to fully succeed, teachers need to be given the training and support they need to teach every child.
Global Campaign for Education. Sightsavers is a member of the Global Campaign for Education which promotes education as a basic human right, and mobilizes public pressure on governments and the international community to fulfill their promises to provide free, compulsory public basic education for all people.