Clear Eyes and Jobs for Women in Rural Bangladesh

February 2020

Women who work in factories need to focus on sewing at the same distance for long periods of time, and this creates eye health problems, but if detected early, it is avoidable,” said Alauddin Mohammed, Director of Programs at Orbis International, Bangladesh.

Orbis reaches out to garment workers and people around the area to conduct eye screening, prescribe spectacles and share eye care tips.

Garments are the backbone of Bangladesh’s industrial sector. There is a lack of eye care service in the garment factories where over 4 million women are working. The most common loss of visual acuity is presbyopia, which is present in adults over 35 years old, becoming more prevalent with age.

Over nine months, Orbis partnered with *Nari Uddug Kendra to organise eye screening for garment workers and those living in the vicinity. We also increased the knowledge of Community Health Care Provider to provide primary eye care and organize effective outreach camps and community awareness program.

The project was completed in December 2019 and it was beyond our targets. We conducted 1014 eye screening (101% achieved), distributed 248 spectacles (124%), disbursed 743 medicines (106%), oriented 100 Community Healthcare Workers (100%), established four vision points (100%) and oriented 400 garment workers (133%).

*Nari Uddug Kendra is a non-government national women's development support organization, mandated to promote gender equality, human rights and fostering personal and political empowerment of women and girls in Bangladesh.