When Darrel was nine months old, his mother Beatrice noticed a problem with her baby’s eyes. They were always filled with tears and looked sore and red. When she took him to a clinic, he was diagnosed with glaucoma.

Glaucoma is an eye disease caused by increased pressure within the eye, and it can develop at any age. People with glaucoma usually lose their sight because increased pressure in the eye and other factors (poor blood flow) affect the optic nerve at the back of the eye. The eye slowly loses nerve function and side (peripheral) vision. This occurs painlessly, even unnoticeably.

Although glaucoma can be treated and sight often maintained (if diagnosed in time), an estimated 4.5 million people are blind because of it, accounting for almost 12 percent of global blindness.

Operation Eyesight works with local medical professionals in developing countries to support comprehensive eye care that includes diagnosis and surgical treatment of glaucoma. By constructing facilities, providing equipment and supporting medical personnel at existing facilities, Operation Eyesight helps prevent and treat glaucoma.