Our work in Sierra Leone

Sightsavers has been working in Sierra Leone since the 1960s. Our focus is on treating cataracts and preventing the spread of neglected tropical diseases.

A man and a large group of children smiling and looking at the camera.

Sightsavers is working to eliminate neglected tropical diseases in Sierra Leone, particularly river blindness and lymphatic filariasis.

It’s thought that 3.5 million people need medication to protect them against river blindness, and more than 7 million people for lymphatic filariasis. To tackle this, we’ve trained more than 29,000 community volunteers to give out medication and distributed almost 10 million treatments in the country.

We also aim to improve the quality of eye health services in the country and ensure more people can access them.

As part of our inclusive education project in the Bombali district of Sierra Leone, funded by the European Union, we support children with disabilities, particularly girls, to make sure they have a chance to go to school. We are working with partners to improve 45 schools and train teachers so they have the specialist skills to help children learn.

It is so important to send children with disabilities to school, because they too have goals like any other children.
Hassanatu, inclusive education teacher
Teach Hassanatu helps pupils in the classroom.

How we’re making a difference in Sierra Leone

Staff from Makeni Hospital's eyecare team smile for the camera.

Protecting sight

We train eye care workers such as Abubakar and his team so they can save sight across the country.
Meet the team

Students from Gbendembu School in Sierra Leone.

Access to education

Our education project in Sierra Leone is enabling children with disabilities to learn alongside their peers.
Read about the project

Close up photo of a visually impaired man wearing dark glasses.

Disability rights

We’re campaigning to make sure people with disabilities like Samuel are able to learn, earn and be happy.
Read Samuel’s story

Your donation could help to protect sight


More from Sierra Leone

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
A man smiling while sat on a motorbike.
Sightsavers Reports

Celebrating our health workers on World Health Day

As we thank all our health workers on World Health Day, meet six who have worked with Sightsavers to help improve eye care for people in their communities.

A group of musicians play guitar on stage, with Sightsavers banners in the background.
Sightsavers from the field

March updates: highlights from around the world

News about Sightsavers' fundraising gala in Dubai, plus updates from Sierra Leone, Zambia and Mozambique.

March 2019
Two medical staff clean eyes of men in traditional african dress.
Sightsavers from the field

November updates: highlights from around the world

News about a programme that has distributed more than 137,000 pairs of glasses across eight countries. Plus updates from Guinea, Cote d’Ivoire, Mozambique and more.

November 2018
A group of patients in Kenya smile and laugh following their cataract surgery.
Sightsavers from the field

October updates: highlights from around the world

In October, celebrations took place in many of Sightsavers' programme countries to mark World Sight Day. Plus news from Kenya, Mozambique and more.

October 2018
Students from Gbendembu School in Sierra Leone.
Sightsavers from the field

“We’ve learned to treat all children equally”

Sightsavers' Kate McCoy travelled to northern Sierra Leone to visit a school where teachers are being specially trained to support children with disabilities.

June 2018
Student Ariane smiles at her desk while wearing her new glasses.
Sightsavers from the field

May highlights: updates from around the world

News from Mali, where a new initiative is helping children with visual impairments to go to school. Plus updates from Guinea, Sierra Leone, Senegal and Cameroon.

May 2018
Staff from Makeni Hospital's eyecare team smile for the camera.
Sightsavers from the field

Meeting Sierra Leone’s miracle workers

A group of Sightsavers staff travelled to Makeni Hospital in Sierra Leone to meet the amazing eye care workers your donations are helping to support.

February 2018
A girl standing outside a school

Children with disabilities in Sierra Leone given the chance to go to school

The Education for All project will focus on girls with disabilities, who are often excluded because of prejudice or a lack of funding.

September 2017

We save sight in 30 countries worldwide

Where we work