GENEVA, Switzerland, November 2010 — The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that over the past 10 years, the global initiative called Vision 2020: The Right to Sight has contributed to a 10 percent reduction in the number of people worldwide who are visually impaired.
Before she had eyeglasses, Ramyalatha of Sri Lanka had difficulty doing her small shop’s accounts and caring for her children. (Image: Optometry Giving Sight)
The WHO announcement, made on World Sight Day (Oct. 14), was even more notable considering that during the same period the number of people over 50 has increased by 18 percent, and it is this segment of the population that is most susceptible to vision impairment.
In addition, the number of blind people has fallen by 5.2 million since 2004, to 39.8 million today. This is a decline of 16 percent.
Vision 2020’s goal is to eliminate the principal causes of avoidable blindness by 2020. This includes a lack of eye exams and glasses to correct nearsightedness and other common vision problems.
To learn how you can help reach this goal, read about the work of Vision 2020 supporter Optometry Giving Sight (OGS). For every $5 donation, OGS can provide an eye exam and a pair of glasses to a needy person who, without glasses, would be visually impaired and unable to work or go to school.