Remembering the Queen

As we honour Queen Elizabeth II’s life and legacy, we reflect on the impact her patronage has had on Sightsavers’ work.

The Queen smiles as she greets staff.

We’re honoured to have had the long-standing support of our patron Queen Elizabeth II, and we offer our sincere condolences to the royal family and all those who mourn her loss.

Throughout her reign, the Queen was committed to supporting Sightsavers. She championed our mission to protect sight and fight for disability rights by raising vital awareness both at home and across the globe. A year after becoming our patron in 1957, the Queen granted us royal status.

In 1969, the Queen sent a telegram of congratulations following the ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro by seven blind men from East Africa. Along with her support, this amazing feat challenged discrimination around disability and paved the way for Sightsavers’ first inclusive education programme.

Over the years, the Queen has met, inspired and honoured many Sightsavers staff, and we are privileged to have enjoyed such a long-lasting relationship with her.

The Queen greets Sunday Isiyaku and other guests at the Buckingham Palace event.

Sightsavers pays tribute to the Queen

Our CEO Caroline Harper reflects on the loss of Queen Elizabeth II and the lasting impact of her patronage on Sightsavers.

Read our statement

The Queen and The Trachoma Initiative

The Queen’s wish to end avoidable blindness is enshrined in the legacy left by The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust.

Funded by the trust, The Trachoma Initiative supported ministries of health in seven countries in Africa to fight trachoma. The five-year programme provided 26.6 million antibiotic eye treatments and 102,400 sight-saving operations to treat the world’s leading cause of infectious blindness. It also ensured that local healthcare providers had the skills, resources and staff they need to prevent trachoma in the future.

The Queen’s legacy will continue to be felt for many years to come as these countries carry on their vital work and move ever closer to eliminating trachoma as a public health problem.

Trachoma surgeon Samson Lokele meets the Queen at a reception at Buckingham Palace.
Trachoma surgeon Samson Loeke meets the Queen at a reception to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee Trust. © Sightsavers/The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust

Our CEO shares her experience of the royal funeral

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