Lions and Sightsavers’ began working together in the 1970s. Lions Sightsavers donates on average £100,000 a year to Sightsavers’ eye care programmes in India. Clubs support the Comprehensive Eye Services (CES) Programme which provides integrated services of eye care, education and rehabilitation within a specific community.
Eye camp programme
This programme grew out of the Lions Sightsavers Eye Camp programme, which started over 30 years ago. In that time a very large number of people have had their problems identified and their sight restored. Originally, cataract operations were carried out in the back of Land Rovers or under canvas, but with time conditions have improved and now those requiring treatment are taken to hospitals (some of which were built with Campaign SightFirst funds) for improved treatment.
However, not all those arriving at an eye camp could be treated. Some were incurably blind, or might have a condition that a cataract operation would not help.
The CES programme is able to offer something to everyone with a sight related problem. A blind person is directed to rehabilitation or training, a blind child will be helped to be integrated into school and all other eye problems are dealt with appropriately through health education, treatment or surgery.
Integrated eye care services
A Lions Club’s donation now buys a share in integrated services of eye care, education and rehabilitation. Reports are issued to Clubs that donate £250 or more. The report identifies which CES their money has gone to, gives the results of the previous twelve months’ activities and details of the projected plans for the following twelve months. The report includes a map identifying the area of the country where Comprehensive Eye Services are being provided.