Avoidable blindness

Imagine losing your sight in one of the poorest regions in the world. Where would you turn for help? With few quality eye doctors, hospitals or clinics, your chances of getting the right kind of care are small. As your sight gets worse, your chances of getting an education or earning a steady income begin to fade away.

The Problem

A staggering 90% of all vision loss is treatable or preventable. That equates to 1 billion people on this planet, living with vision loss from avoidable causes. Nine out of ten people with vision loss live in low- and middle-income countries, and 55% are women and girls. The vast majority of these people only need a small intervention, like a pair of reading glasses, to correct their vision.

Out of this 1 billion, there are 43 million people who are blind and a further 295 million living with moderate-to-severe visual impairment. Out of these, a huge 77% is completely preventable or treatable.

This means there are 33 million people who are blind and 227 million whose lives are severely affected by their vision - needlessly.

If they had been able to access the eye care they need, like a simple cataract surgery or a pair of glasses – the kind of care so many of us take for granted – they would be able to see clearly today.

Imagine the world around you in darkness.

Eliminating avoidable blindness is one of the most cost-effective ways of fighting poverty. For every $1 invested in blindness prevention, more than €4 is returned in economic terms.

But of course, people are not just statistics. At Orbis, we believe everyone deserves the same opportunity to see the sunrise in the morning, regardless of where they are born.

Our Solution

Most of the time what it takes to help someone see is relatively straightforward - removing a cataract, prescribing glasses, providing access to antibiotics or raising awareness of good eye care can be enough to prevent a lifetime of blindness.

The challenge is building lasting structures that can deliver the type of care needed for generations to come. At Orbis, we know the only way to make a real difference is to strengthen health systems so people can access the quality eye care they deserve when they need it.

Fortunately, the eye health community has a proven track record of getting results.

And with your support and our amazing volunteers, we can not only give people their sight back today, but we can also help build a lasting legacy of quality eye care – ensuring no one goes needlessly blind tomorrow.

Our approach is creating solutions to the global blindness crisis, so more people can see the sun rise every day.

Nearly four decades ago, our fight against avoidable blindness began with the launch of our first Flying Eye Hospital. Today, our amazing team of Volunteer Faculty continues to fly around the world delivering medical training and education to local eye care teams.

Our partnerships with governments, health ministries, NGOs and local hospitals will ensure that we continue to pull together to help fight blindness around the world.

Donate Today

Help us fight avoidable blindness and vision loss in Ethiopia.

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