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General News of Thursday, 13 October 2011

Source: Vodafone

Vodafone restores sight for 2,500 people

Accra, 13th October 2011: Vodafone Ghana today announced that it is working in collaboration with Sightsavers and the Ghana Health Service to restore the sight of 2,500 visually impaired people suffering from cataract and trachoma across Ghana. This is as part of its contribution to World Sight Day; a day set aside by the United Nations (UN) to focus global attention on blindness and visual impairment.

Vodafone Ghana funded this initiative which is being organised by Sightsavers as part of the World Sight Day celebrations. The project is being led by qualified healthcare professionals from the Ghana Health Service, who have set up over 80 screening centres across the country, offering free screening and surgeries on patients suffering from cataract and trachoma; two major causes of blindness in Ghana. Vodafone Ghana’s association with this lifesaving initiative reaffirms its commitment to the well-being of Ghanaians especially economically disadvantaged people who have little or no access to quality healthcare. The funding provided by Vodafone enabled Sightsavers and the Ghana Health Service to extend screening and treatment across all the regions till the end of November 2011.

According to Carmen Bruce Annan, Head of Corporate Communications at Vodafone,Vodafone is delighted to be partnering with Sightsavers and the Ghana Health Service to give the ‘gift of sight’to 2,500 visually impaired Ghanaians. ‘’We are passionate about the health of the people in our communities, especially the less privileged sections of the society. Eyesight is something that can easily be taken for granted, yet we know that cataract is the leading cause of blindness in our country. We consider it an honour to be in the position to make a real and lasting impact in these patients’ lives’’, she said.

‘’We believe every Ghanaian deserves good health and we are committed to making the right partnerships to fulfill our promise of empowering Ghanaians to take control of their health and lead more fulfilled lives ’’ she added.

On her part, the Country Director of Sightsavers Ghana Joyce Ashun said ‘’as we celebrate this year’s World Sight Day under the theme: Reducing Blindness, ‘The Importance of Eye Care in National Development’, Sightsaverswants to reinforce our belief that no one go blind from avoidable blindness. This, however, requires a collective responsibility and this is why we are excited to be working with Vodafone this year to celebrate World Sight Day and to help restore sight for many people across the country. We are also in partnership with the Ghana Health Service which will spearhead the celebrations and ensure that sight-restoring surgeries are performed during the period of the celebrations’’.

The World Health Organisation information on blindness indicates that cataract is the leading cause of blindness globally, accounting for between 40 to 50 per cent of all blindness. Cataract is very common with people above 50 years.

In Ghana, the major causes of blindness are cataract refractive errors which account for 50 per cent of sight impairment and trachoma with15 per cent, Glaucoma 15 per cent, corneal scars five per cent and other causes 15 per cent.

The screening and treatment sessions will run till end of November under the supervision of Sightsavers. Screening and treatment sessions start on Monday 10th October 2011 however, a number of the centres have already started screening and treating patients.

For further information, please contact the Vodafone Ghana press information line on:

020 340 1313. You can also connect with Vodafone Ghana at:

About Vodafone Ghana

Vodafone Ghana is an operating company of Vodafone Group Plc., the world's leading mobile telecommunications company, with a significant presence in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and the United States.

Vodafone Ghana is a total communications solutions provider - mobile, fixed lines, internet, voice and data - and is currently unmatched in providing fixed line and internet services - the leader and the first choice for Ghanaians.

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