Emily has impressed and demonstrated passion, commitment, and leadership since joining The Foundation over 2.5 years ago. With her background in general nursing and service redesign, Emily has previously worked with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in Australia and in low/middle income settings, for example extended working in children’s health in Kenya.
Emily’s many strengths include her ability to grasp high level concepts and the need for their integration into problem solving approaches. This has served her core Medical Coordinator Role very well. Her leadership alongside change-maker capabilities emerged early on, not being from an eye health background, Emily was quick to extend her personal development by joining the Trachoma elimination field team in Australia to get a real grasp of this condition, its prevention and community engagement strategies on the ground.
Emily’s enthusiasm and competency were quickly noticed by The Foundation’s Program Development team where she was engaged on roles outside of her core Medical Team Coordinator function such as Country Annual Effectiveness Reviews, Country Programming as well as taking up the internal Gender Champion role.
Emily supported the 2019 IAPB Council of Member meeting in Dar Es Salaam helping to run Environmental Sustainability and Climate Change workshops both within the main meeting programme and a two-day satellite workshop which culminated in the recently released IAPB Climate Action Working Group ‘Guide to Sustainable Eye Health Services’ and IAPB’s ‘Declaration of Climate Change Emergency’.
Her greatest achievement has been the leadership she has demonstrated in The Foundation’s Program Division response to the COVID-19 Pandemic where she has worked closely with clinical and program colleagues and country teams to manage the many challenges of the pandemic including PPE Procurement, Guidelines on safe clinical practice and Guidelines on “restarting program activities”.
Emily was Co-Author on The Foundation’s Cataract Quality Improvement Framework and Cataract Quality Improvement Intensive Program within which she led on the Gender sessions with diverse cultural partners from Kenya, Ethiopia and Bangladesh.
In a time of constant change, when The Foundation has had to pivot and adapt how it works during COVID-19 and even now, as we emerge to a post-pandemic phase, Emily has been a leading Change Maker. In additional to her day job and as evidence of her outstanding commitment and support in in the battle against avoidable blindness, she recently completed her Masters in International Health Development.
“I feel very fortunate in my role to learn from and work alongside such dedicated and talented partners and colleagues, across an array of settings and areas of expertise. COVID-19 has highlighted how much stronger we are as Teams and Organisations when we work together, something I have been fortunate to witness over the last 18 months. Our Partners and Country Teams have continued to adapt and innovate to the COVID-19 context with such resilience and ingenuity. I find being a part of The Foundation’s efforts to support eye health work greatly rewarding and professionally enlightening.”
– Emily Hodgetts