International Eye Foundation (IEF) President and IAPB Vice President, Victoria Sheffield was recently featured in IAPB's Year in Review for 2019. In the article posted on iapb.org, Victoria took a moment to share her thoughts on her time spent with VISION2020.
"When I haven't traveled for about 3 months, I miss stepping over that little space between the jetway and the plane and soaring to my next challenge. Leaving 2019 and embarking on 2020 feels like that to me. Two decades have flown by since our meetings at WHO in 1999 to launch VISION2020/The Right to Sight. The Vision Atlas shows us that much has been achieved. We used to call our work "public health ophthalmology" because our main foci were trachoma, vitamin A deficiency (VAD), and onchocerciasis not seen in the developed world, and of course cataract. Blinding cataract has been reduced even with a global population that is increasing and aging. Tremendous reductions in blindness rates due to trachoma, VAD and onchocerciasis are thanks to the efforts of IAPB member agencies, ICO, our wonderful supporters, and the increased emphasis on eye health by WHO and governments."
Victoria, who has been impactful both in the field and with the implementation of blindness prevention programs internationally such as IEF's SightReach® Management Network, and she views The World Report on Vision as the "WHO's gift to us creating a roadmap for the next 10 years."
In October 2019, Ms. Sheffield presented at the IAPB Council of Members 2019 Round-up, where she led the introduction of the Eye Health Heros initiative. This program was "one of the most popular sessions at the council. The sessions this year were credited for being "masterfully handled" by Victoria and Aly Bandali of Operation Eyesight. Pictured here are IAPB’s President Bob McMullen on the left and Victoria second from right with 2019’s IAPB Eye Health Heros.
Are you interested in learning more about IEF's accomplishments in 2019? Read the key achievements of 2019 and how IEF impacts people across Peru, India, and Cameroon.