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2021 in Review: Membership and Eye Health Hero programme

Published: 23.11.2021
Rachael Bourke Membership Services Manager
Eye Health Heroes

Eye Health Heroes

54 Eye Health Heroes joined our 2020 programme, supported by Allergan, an AbbVie company. The newly awarded Heroes embarked on a development journey throughout 2021 that provided them with the opportunity to build their networks and connect with influential figures from within the sector through the various events and activities that took place.

This included exclusive invitations to our Eye Inspire events which are a series of ‘fire side’ conversations with senior leaders finding out more about their leadership journey.

We have been delighted to have been joined by Caroline Harper, CEO, Sightsavers; Jag Dosanjh, Senior Vice President Medical Therapeutics, Abbvie; Professor Tien Wong, Medical Director, Singapore National Eye Centre; H.E Dr Walton a Webson, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, Permanent Representative of Antigua and Barbuda to the United Nations; Ciku Mathenge, Director, Rwanda International Institute of Ophthalmology and Medical Adviser, Orbis International; James Chen, Philanthropist and Founder, Clearly; Jane Barratt, Secretary General, International Federation on Ageing.

Throughout the year the Heroes have also had the opportunity to write blogs which we have published in our newsletters, highlighting their work. Heroes have also been invited to participate in external events both globally and regionally. We have arranged specific advocacy and knowledge sessions for the Heroes to learn more about our activities and discuss ways that they can be involved.


We were delighted to welcome Santen to IAPB as a Global Patron earlier this year. We also welcomed 14 new members to the alliance in 2021 from eight different countries. We’re thrilled to have you on board and look forward to working with all our members, old and new, into 2022 and as we work towards achieving the objectives of the sectoral strategy ‘2030 In Sight’.

Earlier this year, we sent a survey to all members to understand more about what you find of value within IAPB and if and how you think we can improve our services. Overall the feedback we received was very positive. The benefits that our members find of most value are  World Sight Day materials, the Vision Atlas, our webinars and online events, and our newsletters highlighting the incredible work of members around the world. We know that a lot of our members miss the opportunity to network and meet with old friends at our annual events (as do we!) and so we are really looking forward to seeing as many of you as possible at our ‘2030 In Sight Live’ event in March.

We have taken the feedback on board on how to improve our services and are implementing these suggestions throughout our plans next year. We are increasing our country level activities and will provide more opportunities for all members of all sizes and all organisations to be more involved and participate in our work. Some of the ways in which we plan to do this is through the IPEC (Integrated People Centred Eye Care) policy dialogues which will be taking place in over 80 countries. We’re also organising various activities focused on 2030 In Sight at a regional and national level and we want all members to involved. To find out more and to see how you can get involved, please get in touch with me at [email protected]