Our work in Senegal

Sightsavers has been working in Senegal since 2001 to prevent avoidable blindness and make sure eye care services are available for everyone who needs them.

Ndeye's mother embraces her as they sit in their family home

In Senegal, it’s thought that one in 100 people are blind, and many more are visually impaired.

Sightsavers’ work in the country aims to ensure eye health services are available to all, particularly those who are marginalised or vulnerable. We provided vision tests and deworming treatment in 31 schools as part of the School Health Integrated Programming project: in 2019 we screened more than 18,000 children for vision problems.

We’re also working to eliminate trachoma, a neglected tropical disease, which is a major public health problem in Senegal: about 25,000 people in the country are blind because of the disease.

Alongside eye health programmes, Sightsavers empowers people with disabilities so they can go to school, get a job and support themselves. In 2021, we helped 261 children with visual impairments and other disabilities in Senegal to go to school. We also helped to train teachers about inclusion, and are working in four regions to encourage people with disabilities to vote in local elections and take part in community decision-making.

Watch a video of our Senegal country director Salimata Bocoum speaking about our successful inclusive education project in the country.

At a glance

Total population
  • 16.2 million

  • What we focus on
  • Cataracts
  • Trachoma
  • Disability rights

  • Key programmes
  • Cataract surgery
  • Tropical Data Project
  • Accelerate
  • Inclusive education in Senegal

  • Previous programmes
  • SHIP: health in schools
  • Babacar performs surgery wearing protective equipment on a trachoma patient.

    How we’re making a difference in Senegal

    The COVID-19 pandemic meant pausing much of our trachoma work. However thanks to hard-working surgeons like Babacar, patients have been able to get the care they need.

    Read Babacar's story

    Your donation could help to protect sight


    More from Senegal

    A boy with crutches sits with his friends in the playground during lunch break at school in Senegal.
    Sightsavers Reports

    In Senegal, we’re ensuring all children are able to go to school

    Every child deserves the opportunity to reach their full potential. Your donations are helping to train teachers so they can welcome children with visual impairments and other disabilities into the classroom.

    A large group of people stand on the main stage at the World Water Forum.
    Sightsavers blog

    Collaboration is key: lessons from the World Water Forum

    Sightsavers’ Salimata Bocoum shares learnings, actions and reflections from the World Water Forum, where the importance of working together to fight neglected tropical diseases was a key theme.

    Salimata Bocoum, April 2022
    A girl smiles as she has her eyes tested.
    Sightsavers from the field

    May 2021 update: highlights from around the world

    In Pakistan, teachers have given insights into their experiences of vision screening in schools. Plus updates from Senegal, Mozambique and Nigeria.

    May 2021
    School children in Cameroon line up to wash their hands from a large bucket.
    Sightsavers from the field

    March 2021 updates: highlights from around the world

    A campaign to protect school children from worm infections has been launched in Cameroon. Plus news from Burkina Faso, India and more.

    March 2021
    African Renaissance Monument is lit up in honour of World NTD Day.
    Sightsavers from the field

    World NTD Day 2021: highlights from around the world

    On 30 January 2021, Sightsavers joined global celebrations to mark the fight against neglected tropical diseases.

    February 2021
    A boy using a phone with his father sitting behind.
    Sightsavers from the field

    Programme staff explain how we’re supporting children's learning during lockdown

    Sightsavers staff provide a first-hand insight into the five ways we’re making sure children with disabilities aren’t left behind during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    July 2020

    We save sight in 30 countries worldwide

    Where we work