Sierra Leone is an extremely poor country, with half of the working age population dependent on subsistence agriculture.

In 2002 the country emerged from a decade-long civil war which destroyed much of its infrastructure. More recently they have suffered the devastating impact of the Ebola epidemic, which has put immense strain on the health services.  Despite the difficult recent history, the country is slowly recovering. Understandably in such an environment, eye care services are fragmented and under-resourced. Vision Aid Overseas is helping to give the country the support it needs to improve these services.

Our work in focus

Vision Aid Overseas' programme in Sierra Leone is focused on developing Vision Centres in the country's Eastern and Northern Provinces. Thanks to generous support from The Clothworkers' Foundation, Vision Aid Overseas is refurbishing and equipping three Vision Centres in the Eastern Province and is funding training for eleven optometry technicians over the next three years.

Making it happen

Kenema: Vision Aid Overseas has opened a Vision Centre at the Eye Hospital of the regional capital, and is providing on-going support. The Kenema Vision Centre will also support a large programme of outreach services, undertaken throughout the province and aimed at people living in rural communities. The outreach programme will be led by a group of optometry technicians who are funded by Vision Aid Overseas and training in The Gambia.

Koidu: An eye testing facility and glasses dispensary was opened in 2015, allowing people in Kono district to access high quality eye care.  

Kailahun: A further dispensary will open during 2017.


A generous grant from the Maitri Trust has allowed Vision Aid Overseas to expand its work to the Northern Province to reach greater numbers of patients through the establishment of a Vision Centre in Bombali District and supporting the training of four Optometry Technicians.

Our supporters

Vision Aid Overseas has received major support for its work in Sierra Leone from the Proactive Grants Programme run by The Clothworkers' Foundation, as well as the Maitri Trust.

In the post-Ebola period, Vision Aid Overseas has been providing free eye tests and glasses to all Ebola survivors, thanks to funding from the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers, and all outreach activities run from Kenema Hospital in the Eastern region is made possible thanks to the provision of a vehicle funded by The Laing Foundation. Vision Aid Overseas plans to continue to expand its successful programme into other regions of Sierra Leone and enable even more people to benefit from good eye care.