In June 2021, the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) and the Islamic Solidarity Fund for Development (ISFD) collaborated with the National Eye Health Program (PNSO) to launch the 2nd phase (Generation II) of the alliance to Fight Avoidable Blindness (AFAB) by conducting two cataract surgeries campaigns in the cities of Diffa and Magaria in Niger.
Under these campaigns, financed by, the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa (BADEA) 8001 patients were given vision screening and 1,029 cataract treatment surgeries were conducted in addition to providing post-surgical monitoring and visits to patients.
These campaigns are a part of a continued commitment to performing 100,000 surgeries in the next five years under the IsDB’s Regional Cooperation and Integration Department initiative.
Pr. Amza Abdou, the National Coordinator of the Eye Health Program (PNSO) in Niger, stated “I would like to address my thanks and gratitude to IsDB Group and BADEA for the consistent efforts made in supporting Niger government to fighting avoidable blindness and improving the quality of life of persons with visual disability and uplifting their socio-economic status. We wish that this exemplary south-south cooperation will remain sustainable, as the proportion of the population suffering from blindness remains high in Niger.”
Khadija Amina Nabale, a 60 years old cataract patient from Magaria stated “It is terrible to lose your sight. I stopped my work as volunteer midwife which affected not only my life but the life of hundreds of pregnant women that are relying on my assistance. The success of this operation has not only given me new hope in this life but also to women in my village”.
To build on the success of the First Generation, the IsDB and the ISFD decided to introduce the Second Generation of the Alliance that aims to benefit 13 IsDB Member Countries, namely Burkina Faso, Chad, Comoros, Côte d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mauritania, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Somalia, and Togo.