Vision Aid Overseas was founded in 1985 by a group of optometrists and dispensing opticians led by our now Honorary Vice President, Brian Ellis MBE. They were horrified by the additional struggle of people in developing countries who were disabled or disadvantaged by poor eyesight simply because they did not have access to affordable eye tests and glasses


Currently, 640 million people worldwide (10% of the global population) suffer because they don't have the right glasses to achieve good vision. Since its foundation, Vision Aid Overseas has helped over a million patients and today focuses on fighting poverty through the power of good vision by transforming access to eye care services and the provision of glasses.

Read the first 25 years of Vision Aid Overseas

Jambo’ (hello)
‘Jambo, Habari?’ (hello, how are)
‘Nzuri sana.’ (very good thanks)

Few British optometrists are fluent in Swahili but, for a small group of Volunteers recently returned from working in free eye camps in Tanzania, those opening phrases will recall the friendly greetings exchanged at the commencement of one of the many thousands of eye examinations performed. - Brian Ellis, Founder

To read the full story of the first 25 years of Vision Aid Overseas, email and we will send you a digital copy.