Seva Canada Society

Seva Canada Society

February 03, 2011 09:00 ET

Sherritt International Corporation Helps Seva Canada Restore Sight and Prevent Blindness in Madagascar

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Feb. 3, 2011) - Sherritt International Corporation has donated $32,000 for Seva Canada's efforts to help restore sight and prevent blindness in Madagascar.

The Seva program will provide eye care for those in need in the Atsinanana region of Madagascar, including the city of Toamasina. The funds will purchase critical eye surgery equipment and diagnostic instruments. Currently there are only two facilities in Atsinanana providing secondary eye care services with basic equipment and limited staff. The population has traditionally had little access to eye care treatment.

The World Health Organization's estimates that there are 14,000 people in Atsinanana who are blind and 42,000 who have visual impairments. Most of the blindness in Madagascar is preventable or treatable, either with basic surgery or through the provision of low cost prescription glasses. 

"Sherritt International Corporation's donation will have a significant impact on eye care in eastern Madagascar," says Penny Lyons, Executive Director of Seva Canada. "Restoring eyesight is the most cost-effective way to reduce poverty according to the World Health Organization and has a ripple effect throughout communities."

Toronto, Canada-based Sherritt International is a diversified natural resource company and a partner in the Ambatovy Project, a major nickel and cobalt project in Madagascar.

Seva Canada was founded in 1982 to eliminate preventable blindness and restore sight in the developing world. Seva provides funding and expertise to partners in developing countries and regions to deliver community and clinical eye care programs that reach the most vulnerable populations – women and children, the very poor and those living in rural areas.

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