World Sight Day is celebrated every year on the second Thursday of October. This year it falls on Thursday 13th October. This day is celebrated to create awareness about vision impairment; blindness as well as sight related problems. World Sight Day highlights the importance of good vision for all people. The focus of this day is to educate target audiences about blindness prevention, about VISION 2020 and to generate support for VISION 2020 programme activities.
This year the ‘Call to Action’ for World Sight Day is “Stronger Together”.
According to World Health Organization (WHO) estimates, approximately 285 million people worldwide suffer from low vision and blindness. Of these, 39 million are blind and 246 million have moderate or severe visual impairment. The major causes of visual impairment are uncorrected refractive errors (43%) and cataract (33%). Most of the blindness (approx 80%) is avoidable i.e. curable or preventable.
Prevention of blindness is the most cost-effective and successful of all the health interventions. VISION 2020 is a global initiative that aims to eliminate avoidable blindness by the year 2020. It was launched on 18 February 1999 by the World Health Organization together with more than 20 international non-governmental organisations involved in eye care, prevention and management of blindness that comprise the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB).
How to Maintain Good Eye Health:
"Every 20 minutes, rest your eyes by looking 20 feet away for 20 seconds."
Role of Civil Society:
Maintaining good eye health is not only an individual duty but also collective responsibility of the society. A large number of people can be benefitted by eye donation.
"Take a pledge today to donate your eyes to give a better vision to someone. "