WSD 2011

WSD11 – international day of awareness for VISION 2020: The Right to Sight

Recognising blindness and vision impairment as global public health issues

World Sight Day 2011 (WSD11) has the official, global date of the second Thursday inOctober, which this year falls on the 13th. It will be marked by organisations and institutions around the world, in many different ways, on or around that date.

An estimated 284 million people worldwide are visually impaired, yet 80% of cases are due to causes which could have been prevented, treated or cured. 90% of blind people live in developing countries, and this needless waste costs individuals, families and communities billions of dollars every year.

There is no global theme for WSD11, which we hope will allow each participating organisation to use the occasion to highlight its own priority areas, in ways which will resonate with their own target audiences. Template press releases and supporting materials will be produced for download from, as the months progress toward October.

A new global logo has been developed for World Sight Day, based on the Braille symbols which spell “WSD”. Versions have been developed in Arabic, French, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Chinese. These logos will be made available for download, and will also be used in generic posters, bookmarks and other promotional materials for distribution to requesting organisations in August.

According to WHO estimates:

  • 286 million people are visually impaired
  • Of these, 39 million are blind, and 246 million have moderate or severe visual impairment
  • YET 80% of blindness is avoidable
  • 90% of people with visual impairments live in developing countries
  • Almost 65% of visually impaired people are over 50 years of age
  • 19 million children are visually impaired