CALGARY, Alberta, April 23, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- As COVID-19 continues to spread around the world, Calgary-based international charity, Operation Eyesight, is applying the organization’s systems and experience in providing quality eye health care to meet the immediate need facing health care systems in developing countries.

“Diseases are not deterred by borders, and Canadians recognize the importance of providing support and expertise to the people in the world who need it the most,” says Aly Bandali, President and CEO of Operation Eyesight.

Any spread of COVID-19 in the world is a concern for Canadians and Operation Eyesight is using its existing network and partnerships to mitigate the spread in the countries where they work. In South Asia and Africa, Operation Eyesight is helping to address the new challenges to community health that have been caused by the coronavirus pandemic in an effort to help with global recovery.

They are providing urgently needed help and supplies to effectively respond to the changing needs of these communities, including hygiene kits, hand-washing stations, educational materials and personal protective equipment for front-line community health workers.

As with Operation Eyesight’s approach to improving the quality and delivery of eye health care in low- and middle-income countries, the key to providing support during the COVID-19 crisis is the empowerment of local citizens and local leadership. While the organization is currently working towards containing the spread of COVID-19 in some of the poorest regions in the world, ultimately the sustainability of these systems will lead to a more equitable and safer world. That benefits everyone, including Canadians.

Kashinath Bhoosnurmath, VP of International Programmes based in Hyderabad, India, explains the importance of our current focus to respond to the communities the organization supports.

“Right now, the health care situation in the countries where we work is dire and will most likely worsen despite the efforts being made by local governments,” says Bhoosnurmath. “We need to address the basic needs of the communities that have no access or limited access to health services, and they need any support we can provide to get them to a state where they are facilitating better health outcomes for their citizens, including eye health.”

With support from donors in Canada, Operation Eyesight has already taken immediate steps to make a difference in addressing COVID-19. To learn more or make a donation to support their COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund, visit operationeyesight.com/covid-19/.  

Media contact:
Melissa Crocker
Senior Marketing Specialist
Operation Eyesight Universal
Calgary, Alberta
Phone: 587-602-2310
Email: CrockerM@operationeyesight.com

About Operation Eyesight
Operation Eyesight is an international development organization working to prevent blindness and restore sight in low- and middle-income countries. Founded in Calgary in 1963, the organization currently has eye health programs in India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia and Zambia. In partnership with local hospitals and governments, Operation Eyesight invests in sustainable treatment, prevention and community development activities to address specific eye health problems as well as the root causes of avoidable blindness. To learn more, visit operationeyesight.com.   

Videos accompanying this announcement are available at: 

https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/97ff76d8-405c-4c37-a809-8cb695a65edc

https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/a5d42d0d-bb32-4cad-ba37-522de1639439