In order to design, plan and implement programmes of the highest possible standard, our employees and partners must be equipped with the appropriate technical knowledge and capacity. This features as a key objective on our organisational SIM Card (strategy implementation and monitoring card) and our Programme Development Team (PDT) has been tasked with leading on this.
Located within PDT, Sightsavers has four in-house Programme Development Advisors who provide technical assistance to our programmes:
Dr Hannah Faal
A qualified ophthalmologist, Hannah has many years experience in community eye health and population-based eye care programming. Originally from Nigeria, she relocated to The Gambia in 1980 to work as the sole ophthalmologist, serving a population of 800,000. She was subsequently responsible for initiating the national eye care programme in the country, resulting in a fall in the prevalence of blindness from 0.7% to 0.4% between 1986-1996.
Hannah is internationally recognised as one of the founders of the VISION 2020 initiative, particularly for Africa, and has also served as President of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) from 1999-2004. She has published extensively on blindness prevention, trachoma, cataract and human resource development for eye care, and has acted as advisor to the Prevention of Blindness programme of the World Health Organization (WHO).
Hannah has worked for Sightsavers since 1988, advising programmes on health systems strengthening, human resources for health, integrating eye health into primary health care, and participatory community approaches.
Hasan obtained his diploma in optometry with distinction in 1989. He works to promote inclusion of persons with vision impairment through establishment of services for optometry and low vision, and training of appropriate human resources. As part of his research activities, Hasan has developed a number of low vision devices including magnifiers, telescopes and a high quality low cost CCTV.
Hasan is a member of various WHO and Vision 2020 working groups and lectures on low vision and refractive error at the International Centre for Eye Health within the London School of Tropical Hygiene and Medicine, the Pakistan Institute of Community Ophthalmology, and the Pakistan Institute of Preventive Ophthalmology. He has been invited to present at various professional conferences and congresses around the world and in 2007 he received the ‘Essilor Award for Outstanding International Contributions to Optometry’.
Hasan joined Sightsavers in 1998. He specialises in health systems strengthening, human resource development for refractive errors and low vision, research activities, and assisting inclusive education programmes in areas such as low vision and assistive technology.
Chris has worked with Sightsavers for over 40 years in the areas of assistive technology and sport for visually impaired people, strengthening relationships with blind people’s organisations, and in his role as Senior Training Consultant for the World Blind Union’s Institutional Development Programme.
Originally planning to follow his father’s footsteps into the brewing industry, Chris lost his sight due to an industrial accident in 1965. After initial rehabilitation, he worked as an international correspondent for the French industrial and commercial magazine “La Revue Francaise”. This role involved extensive travel throughout East Africa and it was here that Chris first encountered the work of Sightsavers. In 1968, he was appointed by Sightsavers to develop an appeals programme in South East England and the Channel Islands, joining the organisation as a senior member of the fundraising team in 1977.
Chris has served on the executive committee of the Royal National Institute for the Blind and the World Blind Union (WBU), and is currently chair of the WBU’s Copyright & Right to Read Working Group. In June 1999, Chris was awarded the MBE for services to Sightsavers in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List and in 2004 he received the South African National Council’s 75th anniversary award for exceptional services to blind people.
Diane has worked in the NGO sector all her life, starting with environmental issues and then pursuing human rights issues, including indigenous people’s rights, women’s rights and disability rights. From 1999, Diane coordinated a three year research programme on civil society and governance across 22 countries at the Institute of Development Studies. She then moved to Indonesia for five years as a Country Director for VSO.
Diane is currently a member of a specialist disability committee in the UK’s National Human Rights Institution, an independent Ministerial advisor on disability issues and the UK’s nominated candidate for the 2012 UN CRPD committee election. She was awarded an OBE for services to disabled people and equal opportunities in the Queen’s New Year Honours in 2010.
Joining Sightsavers in 2007, Diane supports country and regional teams to understand disability and the social inclusion sector, and to engage effectively with disabled people’s organisations and networks. She also advises our advocacy, policy and government relations teams with regard to these issues, and supports disability research and its dissemination within Sightsavers.