NEW YORK—In honor of International Day of Education on Monday, January 24, 2022, the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) rolled out its #FocusOnChildEyeHealth campaign, a chance to “champion equitable, accessible and strong education systems that ensure children have every opportunity to thrive,” according to the IAPB. Proper eyecare and eye health are vital components of a child’s educational journey, but often are neglected, the Agency said. With Focus on Child Eye Health, IAPB “will explore solutions and actions to ensure that vision impairment in children is no longer overlooked on the list of public health priorities.”

As part of the program, IAPB is planning a series of webinars and events to raise issues related to child eye health around the world. Supported by CooperVision, the events, to be announced soon, will look at the over 90 million children and adolescents with vision impairment or blindness, and what the optical community can do to keep their vision impairment from affecting their learning, too.

On a more local level, ECPs can get involved with protecting children’s vision with the help of the resources the IAPB has developed. Available for free online, the IAPB has shared social media posts that cover the importance of looking after children’s eye health, and the importance of International Day of Education. In addition, any IAPB members engaged in school eye health can join in on the IAPB’s School Eye Health Work Group, which meets twice a year to advocate for inclusion of school eye health into school health programs, set a standard for school eye health services and more.

Priya Morjaria, co-chair of the IAPB Child Eye Health Working Group said, “The COVID-19 pandemic had led to a global learning disruption of unprecedented scale and a disruption in health systems like we have never seen. At IAPB, we know there is an intrinsic link between health and educational outcomes. For example, children with clear, healthy vision are more likely to excel in their studies and better engage with their peers. All children deserve an education, and a child’s potential should not be compromised simply because they cannot see clearly.” 

The IAPB also shared that it wants to hear from ECPs and organizations who are working in these areas and learn more about their initiatives. ECPs who fit that description can contact Saloni Nagpaul at

Head over to the IAPB’s dedicated page for Focus on Child Eye Health to download resources for your practice, learn more about upcoming events and more.

IAPB is encouraging ECPs and organizations to focus on child eye health this International Day of Education. Image via iapb on Instagram

The IAPB has shared free, downloadable resources that ECPs can use to help spread their message. Image via IAPB

Ensuring children have access to adequate eyecare is a vital component of their education. Image via IAPB

Over 90 million children and adolescents experience vision impairment or blindness. Image via IAPB