Strategy to 2030
A world where no one lives in poverty because of poor eyesight and no one lives with poor eyesight because of poverty.
To reduce vision impairment through achieving universal access to affordable eye care and glasses.
To deliver universal eye health and reduce visual impairment caused by uncorrected refractive error.
How we tackle poor eyesight
We work in low- and middle-income countries, supporting national governments to deliver and strengthen their eye health strategies.
We work in partnership with local governments, civil society organisations, international and national NGOs, and the private sector.
Our ambition is to increase equitable access to eye care services and glasses, and accelerate achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals for no poverty; good health and wellbeing; quality education; gender equality; decent work and economic growth; reduced inequalities; and strengthening partnerships for the goals.
Our ten-year strategy is driven by the need for universal health coverage and integrated people-centred eye care, as proposed by the WHO World Report on Vision 2019. Integrated people-centred eye care means providing quality eye care coordinated and delivered over the whole course of a person’s life.
Our strategy follows a combined approach of interventions at the first point of contact in a healthcare system alongside a continuum of care for those with more complex needs. Our strategy also involves training teachers and primary healthcare workers in basic eye health and how to screen for eye problems as well as improving the quality and availability of eye care services at district and regional hospitals.
This approach will help to address the barriers of availability, accessibility, affordability and acceptability that were identified in the WHO World Report on Vision 2019 and ensure that the right people are in the right places supported by the right policies, training and equipment.
Our strategy will also include empowering people and communities to have a say in their eye care. By working with communities and raising awareness about eye health, we aim to tackle stigma and misconceptions associated with eye care and glasses.
We will support the development of Human Resources for Eye Health (HREH). Since 2015, Vision Aid Overseas has engaged over 2,330 people in eye care related training. As an organization, we look into the requirements of each country, institution and individual. This means that we are strengthening the clinical skills of student optometrists, providing practical training to dispensing opticians and technicians, supporting universities to develop optometry course materials, providing scholarships to increase the number of qualified eye health personnel such as optometry technicians or optometrists, and training primary healthcare workers in Primary Eye Care.
We will strengthen essential eye health services at schools, communities, and vision centres. We focus on social enterprise development, new technology, supporting supply chains of affordable glasses and essential equipment, as well as assistive technologies for low vision. We also focus on promoting and strengthening local outreach services, the inclusion of eyecare in health insurance schemes and we want to engage with the private sector.
We understand the importance of having strong eyecare support. Did you know that Ethiopia has only 540 qualified optometrists serving a population over 100 million? Tackling this issue and helping across Africa will allow everyone to access eye health.
We will promote the engagement and mobilisation of communities. We want to increase awareness, knowledge, health seeking behaviour and demand for services. When community engaging, it is also necessary to reach and support vulnerable members of the same, who otherwise might not access eye care when it is available. We believe that by supporting communities we can spread awareness on the importance of eye health and make it known to people who need glasses.
A global expert
An innovative role model
At Vision Action, we demonstrate and test quality and impactful programme models. Our School Based Eye Health model is a recent example of work that we have successfully piloted and scaled across Ethiopia, Zambia and Sierra Leone. Teachers trained to identify vision impairments screen school children and colleagues who are then reviewed by mobile eye clinics. We will continue to scale up the School Based Eye Health model over the next 10 years.
Vision Action has been working with social enterprise advisors to develop a sustainable vision model that will be piloted in Ghana. In 2020, we hosted a workshop in Ghana bringing together experts from the public and private sectors, academia, government and NGOs. Through this partnership we aim to address the unmet need for eyecare services, in particular refractive error services in Ghana, with plans to expand the project across Ghana and beyond.
A catalyst for change
We pursue a strategy of targeted advocacy, providing technical support to governments and scaling eye health programmes as an active member of international and national coalitions. We are a member of the Coalition for Clear Vision, which is a global coalition of eye health NGOs, social enterprises, private sector and professional organisations committed to developing solutions, scaling services and creating markets to provide access to glasses to everyone who needs them.
driven by our values
1. Being inclusive and
2. Having integrity
3. Being collaborative
4. Being evidence