The USAID Child Blindness Program (CBP)

Two girls in pink with glasses.
Providing glasses to primary school students in need can significantly increase test scores and graduation rates.
Photo credit: Dr. Pierre Decastro, Clinique Ophtalmologique Spécialisée, Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Through quality, innovative programs, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is preventing and treating blindness, restoring sight and providing eyeglasses to thousands of people in the poorest communities of the world. CBP features prominently in USAID's approach to eliminate blindness worldwide. Funding under this program originated through a congressional directive in 1991. Since then, the generous support of the American people has made it possible to deliver eye care to over three million children.

CBP's work includes provision of sight-restoring surgery, screening children for eye diseases and conditions, and delivering eyeglasses to schools. Children who are irreversibly blind receive specialized education to learn Braille, use a cane, and improve their daily living skills. Download the full list of CBP projects [PDF, 495KB].


Chalkboard with the word "Learn" on it.

Goal 1: To increase the number of children provided with quality eye care services by:

  • Increasing the availability and accessibility to quality eye health and vision services for children and other vulnerable populations.
  • Improving the capacity of eye care organizations by strengthening administrative, technical, and/or financial functions.

Goal 2: To increase global knowledge of pediatric eye care through innovation and the implementation of best practices

  • Testing, designing and expanding the scale of innovative approaches for eye care in various country contexts.
  • Increasing the evidence base for effective approaches leading to scale-up of pediatric eye care programs.

Map of countries where child blindness programs exist
CBP’s global grant fund has awarded approximately $28 million to 61 projects in 57 countries, through 54 local and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

Last updated: November 13, 2015

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