We’re midway through 2016, and while many of you are taking a much-needed and well-deserved break from your day jobs, I want to take a moment to share all the Vision Impact Institute (VII) has accomplished as we continue to strive toward goals we set for our organization earlier this year.
At the outset of 2016, we renewed our support for Vision2020, a global program of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB), to reduce avoidable blindness and visual impairment by 25 percent by the end of 2019. This goal remains ambitious, and there is a lot of work being done by many in pursuit of a deadline that is only a few short years away. We also recommitted to our goal of being the leading provider of evidence-based data on uncorrected refractive error (URE) and its global impact. We’ve seen great progress in this sphere, as we’ve been able to share our research with a rapidly growing number of users thanks to multiple language translations available on our website. Our VII brochure is currently available in five languages, and our website is now available in two more translations – Spanish and Portuguese.
For years, URE has been on the periphery of vision health, but it’s now a major focal point. URE is the second leading cause of avoidable blindness around the world only behind cataract, and it’s starting to get attention. The VII is finding itself at a tipping point, leading awareness and partnering with advocates that believe in this cause. Earlier this year, we asked for your thoughts about our web platform and social media channels. As a result of your feedback, we have made exciting updates to the website and launched a Facebook page and a WeChat channel in China. Thank you for your continued engagement with us as we further amplify efforts to raise awareness about the importance of healthy vision. Read more here
by Maureen Cavanagh, President