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Our work in Uganda

Sightsavers’ focus in Uganda is to promote social inclusion and tackle neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). In 2018 we distributed 283,000 NTD treatments and helped to carry out 6,400 sight-saving operations.

A group of smiling schoolboys in Kasuleta, a small rural village in Uganda.

Sightsavers, originally known as the Royal Commonwealth Society for the Blind, started working in Uganda in 1954.

Our first programmes in the country aimed to control river blindness, a debilitating neglected tropical disease, and to provide rehabilitation and support for people whose sight couldn’t be saved.

In 1994, we opened a dedicated office in Kampala, and the following year we began working to help blind and visually impaired children participate fully in mainstream schools. Since 2010, we have focused on improving local health systems, promoting social inclusion and tackling neglected tropical diseases.

Uganda is also home to our award-winning Connecting the Dots project, which has provided vocational training to young people with disabilities so they can find work and support themselves financially. The project has transformed attitudes to disability, and shows potential employers how hiring people with disabilities could benefit their business.

If we are all Ugandans, then we should all be treated equally. That is what I want to see change.
Edith Kagoya, Programme Manager
Edith smiles as she stands holding her young son.

How we’re making a difference in Uganda

Isaac works on the knitting machine alongside his tutor.

Challenging stereotypes

"Disability is not inability. It does not stop you from doing any work another person can perform."

Isaac, employment programme graduate. Read Isaac’s story

Arjuna Socia, 33 yrs stands inside the Kibwoona Health centre in Masindi, Uganda where she attended the Volunteer Distributor Training for Community Directed Distributors (CDD’s) like herself. She is smiling, holding a measuring stick.

Reaching local people

“I wanted to help people because they were dying – I want to save my community and give them medicine.”

Ajuna Socia, local volunteer
Read Ajuna’s story

William Mugayo speaks into the microphone during a radio broadcast.

Raising awareness

“Radio allows people to ask questions, and it spreads awareness among a bigger group of people.”

William Mugayo, district worker
Read the story

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More from Uganda

A close-up of Esther Anyango wearing her hospital scrubs.
Sightsavers Reports

Esther’s story

Esther Anyango, from Uganda, operates on people with blinding trachoma through The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust’s Trachoma Initiative.

Three young men standing with their arms around each other, smiling.
Sightsavers blog

Why I support Sightsavers' Equal World disability rights campaign

A lot of people with disabilities grow up not knowing that they have the same right to education and employment as everyone else – we need to change this. My message to other people with disabilities is: We Can.

Atugonza Milton, October 2019
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
Charles Ahumuza at work as an engineer.
Sightsavers Reports

Charles’s story

Charles Ahumuza, who is partially sighted, reveals how Sightsavers' inclusive employment programme in Uganda has helped him to fulfil his childhood dream of becoming an electrician.

Deus Turyatemba stood in his office
Sightsavers blog

How I’m building a career as a blind person in Uganda

Deus Turyatemba of Standard Chartered shares his story of career progression, and explains the bank’s partnership with Sightsavers’ Inclusion Works programme.

Guest Blogger, 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
A man has his eyes checked at a screening camp in Kasungu, Malawi
Sightsavers blog

Treating hard-to-reach people: what we’ve learned from CATCH

The Coordinated Approach to Community Health programme, which finished in March 2019, has restored the sight of more than 21,000 people and generated a wealth of knowledge.

Moses Chege, May 2019
Old black and white photo showing a group of young men on a mountain slope.
sightsavers_news

Sightsavers marks 50th anniversary of Mount Kilimanjaro expedition

On 20 February 1969, Sightsavers supported men with visual impairments on an expedition to raise awareness about blindness.

February 2019
Gladys Atoo in her Doctor's uniform, smiles at the camera
Sightsavers Reports

Gladys’s story

Gladys Atto is an everyday hero, saving sight and building long-term eye health services in Uganda. She’s one of the talented cataract surgeons whose training you’ve supported.

Carlitos smiles after receiving his new glasses.
Sightsavers from the field

January updates: highlights from around the world

Featuring news about a teacher from Nigeria who has been trained to check her students’ eyes. Plus updates from Mozambique, Uganda and more.

January 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

We save sight in 30 countries worldwide

Where we work