DONATE

Sightsavers-led project aims to distribute 110 million NTD treatments in Nigeria

May 2014

Sightsavers appeal in Nigeria. Galadi, a village close to the border with Niger, 2 hours drive from Gusau, Zamfara state.Locals distribute drugs provided by Sightsavers door-to-door.

Sightsavers is leading an ambitious project to help eliminate seven neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) in Nigeria that aims to distribute 110 million treatments over four years.

The project has been described by Sightsavers CEO Caroline Harper as “a huge step towards consigning preventable infections to the history books where they belong”.

Nigeria has the highest number of people living with neglected tropical diseases in Africa, and many of the diseases can be prevented with simple oral treatments taken once or twice a year. The project aims to reach close to 14 million people in the three northern states of Zamfara, Kano and Katsina, protecting them against blinding trachoma, schistosomiasis, lymphatic filariasis, river blindness and several types of intestinal worms.

The project is possible thanks to generous funding from the UK Department for International Development. It will dramatically increase the availability of treatment for the poorest people in the country, and help prevent disfigurement, disability and chronic illness for millions.

Local community health officers such as Abdullahi Labbo play a key role in raising awareness in the community of neglected tropical diseases and how to treat them.

“During health education sessions through the radio, I provide my phone number for people to call when they require information on NTDs,” says Abdullahi. “I regularly receive calls from people about the impact that NTDs are having on them and I tell them about what they can do to protect themselves and their families. I am proud to be a part of a programme that is working to achieve elimination of seven disabling diseases in Zamfara.”

With the help of Abdullahi and other health officers, the work of the consortium and funding from DFID, we’re getting closer every day to our goal of eliminating neglected tropical diseases.

To find out more, read the latest DFID Nigeria newsletter for updates on the project.

Want to read more about our work?

Neglected tropical diseases
A mother helps her daughter with some school work.
Sightsavers Reports

Khadijah’s story

Six-year-old Khadijah was getting into trouble at school for not being able to do her work. But following an eye operation she can’t wait to learn to read and write.

A large group of people stand with their awards for tackling river blindness in Nigeria.
sightsavers_news

Sightsavers wins award for its work to eliminate river blindness in Nigeria

The Nigerian ministry of health presented the award for Sightsavers' work to treat the disease in Kaduna State.

December 2019
Usman smiles after receiving eye surgery.
Sightsavers from the field

November updates: highlights from around the world

In Nigeria, a lymphatic filariasis patient is planning to marry his partner after receiving treatment to stop his pain. Plus news from Senegal, Zambia and India.

November 2019