Context

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the risk of blindness in children is higher in developing countries with little access to health care. In Malawi, there are only 13 optometrists in the public sector for a population of over 19 million people. As a result, eye care is limited to surgical operations and emergency management of eye diseases.

 

Supported Project

In 2021-2022, L'OCCITANE South Korea and the L'OCCITANE Foundation have renewed their support to the Heart to Heart Foundation in order to keep on promoting eye health in Malawi. 

Within the frame of the project, school-based eye screenings will be conducted by 170 trained teachers at 83 schools and basic treatment for suspected children with eye problems will be carried out by OCO (Ophthalmic Clinical Officers) at school. Hospital-based further treatment will be provided to the children in need.  

Some Figures

2021-2022 Budget 30,000 euros

Goal 113,400 beneficiaries

Partnership History

Project supported since 2017

In 2017, L’OCCITANE South Korea and the L'OCCITANE Foundation supported the Heart to Heart Foundation to conduct a school-based eye health improvement project in Mtwara, Tanzania. At that time, 124 Masasi primary schools and 94 Nanyumbu primary schools were involved

In 2018, the project was expanded to other schools in the region and in Malawi. The project aimed to provide eye screenings, eyeglasses and surgery in 146 primary schools across the country. The staff of the schools concerned was also trained in basic knowledge of eye health and pathologies.

In 2019, the partnership was renewed in order to keep on promoting eye health in Malawi. The project supported provided eye-screening and treatment including glasses and surgery services in 146 primary schools. In addition, basic eye health was teached to teachers in order to ensure the sustainability of school children's eye health. A surgical machine was bought for the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital.

Budget since 2017 149,380 euros

Results since 2017 1,540,224 beneficiaries

Testimony

"My daughter started having sight problems when she was born. When she grew a little, we noticed there was something white in her eye. We thought it would disappear in time, but it didn't. When she started school, she was told to sit in the classroom's front row and when she read books, she had to hold them right up to her eyes as she couldn't see clearly. We took her to the village clinic and they told us to take her to the regional hospital (Ligula), but I wasn't able to. It was a real problem, especially in the evening when there was no daylight, because she was struggling to move around the house. One day, the school called me in and eye doctors were there. They said my daughter had a cataract and needed surgery to get back her eyesight. I was scared because I couldn't afford surgery, but they said all the costs would be covered, including transport and accommodation. I was so happy that my daughter could see again and continue her studies. I've now got hope for her future once more."

Mum of Saumu Abdallah (Dihimba Primary School, sixth year)

Prévention des maladies oculaires en milieu scolaire au Malawi et en Tanzanie