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Our work in Nigeria

More than 20 million people in Nigeria are at risk of blindness from trachoma. Our work in the country focuses on treating and protecting people from trachoma and other diseases.

Women carry containers of water on their heads as they return from a river in the village of Garamach in Kaduna, Nigeria.

Sightsavers has been working in Nigeria for more than 60 years, and our first programmes in the country helped to provide eye care to help eliminate avoidable blindness.

Our work in Nigeria today focuses on controlling and eliminating neglected tropical diseases. It’s thought that 100 million people in Nigeria are at risk of NTDs, and people living in poverty are particularly badly affected. As part of the Global Trachoma Mapping Project, we gathered data about trachoma in Nigeria and found that the country has the second highest burden of trachoma in the world.

As a result, we’ve helped 22 states to map the prevalence of NTDs, so our programmes are accurately targeted where they’re needed most.

In November 2017 we reached our target of providing one billion treatments for NTDs. The billionth treatment, an antibiotic for river blindness and lymphatic filariasis, was distributed to a seven-year-old girl named Dorcas in Kaduna State, Nigeria. Read more about our one billionth treatment.

We work closely with local communities, and we use local volunteers to build trust and encourage people to accept the treatments provided to them. In 2018 we trained more 77,900 community volunteers to give out medication.

 

My role is so important to ensure we keep our community healthy. I find joy in being able to help my village stay safe.
Baraka Ango, local volunteer
A portrait of Baraka, a female medicine distributor.

How we’re making a difference in Nigeria

Rebecca takes a selfie with Dorcas, in Nigeria.

A billion treatments

In 2017, the billionth treatment for NTDs was given to seven-year-old Dorcas in Nigeria. Read her story, and hear from the people we've helped.
Read the story

Boy is held by his mother, he has a face washing guide in his hand.

Super School of 5

This innovative project, in Nigeria, Kenya, Ethiopia and Zambia, features superhero characters to encourage school children to wash their hands.
Meet the superheroes

Community distributor Aliyu gives NTD medication to a young boy in Nigeria.

UNITED in Nigeria

The UNITED project, funded by UK aid, has delivered 116 million treatments to tackle neglected tropical diseases in Nigeria.
About the project

Your donation could help to protect sight

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More from Nigeria

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
Emmanuel Nyamkeen measures a woman's height to determine how much medication to give her.
Sightsavers from the field

October updates: highlights from around the world

In Nigeria, an eye health volunteer has been rewarded for helping to prevent river blindness for more than 20 years. Plus news from Zimbabwe, Ghana and Mali.

October 2019
Someone on crutches shakes a man's hand.
Sightsavers blog

Including people with disabilities in African political life

Findings from our research show that lack of education and financial resources, social stigma and inaccessible physical infrastructure contribute to a lack of political participation in Africa.

Bhavisha Virendrakumar, October 2019
Three women posing together with smiles.
Sightsavers from the field

How Sightsavers celebrated World Sight Day

To mark World Sight Day 2019 on 10 October, Sightsavers country offices celebrated by highlighting the need to provide good-quality eye care to everyone.

October 2019
Selben smiles with a group of health staff in Nigeria.
Sightsavers Reports

Selben’s story

Selben is an ophthalmologist who works for Sightsavers in Kaduna, Nigeria. She manages our programmes and makes sure people are treated for potentially blinding eye conditions.

Children celebrate at school leading up to the one billionth NTD treatment.
sightsavers_news

Nigerian hotspot declared free from river blindness

The disease has been banished from key areas of Nigeria where it was once endemic, bringing it one step closer to being eliminated.

September 2019
Teachers in Pakistan attend training to learn how to check their students' eyes.
Sightsavers from the field

August updates: highlights from around the world

A round-up of the latest work that your donations help to support, including news from Nigeria, Mozambique, Pakistan and India.

August 2019
Sightsavers surgeon Aliyu smiles with a group of children.
Sightsavers Reports

Meet the dancing trachoma surgeon

Aliyu A-Umar, a former trachoma surgeon in Nigeria, has an inspiring way of making people feel at ease about eye care.

Deus Turyatemba stands next to an Inclusive Futures poster
sightsavers_news

Groundbreaking new programme will enable 2,000 people with disabilities to get better jobs

The Inclusion Works programme, funded by UK aid and led by Sightsavers, will create job opportunities for more than 2,000 people with disabilities.

July 2019
Julianah from Kogi, Nigeria stands outside a field near her home in Ajenejo, Kogi State Nigeria.
Sightsavers blog

Putting people at the centre of our work to eliminate neglected tropical diseases

Sightsavers' river blindness and lymphatic filariasis programme has delivered 60 million treatments in four countries. Here’s what we’ve learned from the project.

Ron Bannerman, June 2019
Two women hold up their index fingers after voting in the 2019 Indian general election.
Sightsavers from the field

May updates: highlights from around the world

News from India, where Sightsavers campaigned to help people with disabilities take part in the recent general election. Plus updates from Mali, Bangladesh and Nigeria.

May 2019
A doctor examine a man outside in rural Zambia.
sightsavers_news

‘Keep Sight’ project will train eye care staff to treat glaucoma in Nigeria

The initiative, run by Sightsavers, Allergan and the IAPB, initially aims to train 50 eye care workers, with the goal of screening 5,000 people and treating 500 patients.

May 2019

We save sight in 30 countries worldwide

Where we work