Offering Noor Dubai as a gift from the UAE to the world, Sheikh Ahmed Bin Rashid said the initiative has been inspired by HH Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, who leads by example in mitigating the plight of the needy in the developing world.
Providing details on the ambitious initiative, he informed: “Noor Dubai aims to deliver preventive eye care to over one million people as part of its drive to realize its vision of a world free from curable forms of blindness. It will endeavour to bring light to millions of people whose lives are threatened by a world of darkness.
‘Just as Dubai Cares has become a beacon of hope and inspiration to many countries and international organizations, let us all come together to collectively work to ensure Noor Dubai becomes another catalyst towards a bigger international commitment to cure eye diseases and protect children from preventable forms of blindness.’ In addition to the UAE, Noor Dubai will reach out to people in a number of countries including Iraq, Afghanistan, Mali, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, Egypt, Jordan and Palestine.
Through its programmes, Noor Dubai will help people suffering from three major eye diseases: Cataract, which is the leading cause of blindness in the world affecting 18 million people representing 48 per cent of the total number of blind people; Strabismus that affects over 5 per cent of children worldwide; and Corneal opacities which is responsible for the blindness of 4.9 million people.
Noor Dubai will give equal importance to preventative and awareness programmes in the UAE and outside, for raising the common man’s understanding on the importance of these two approaches in the prevention of blindness.