River Blindness Elimination

Thursday, 1 January, 2015

As part of its goals to battle threatening diseases worldwide, Alwaleed Foundation granted $374,000 to the Carter Center to help eliminate Onchocerciasis, or river blindness, in Ethiopia.

A parasitic disease transmitted through the black fly, river blindness has affected millions of people in Africa and Latin America. In Ethiopia, 12.2 million people live in river blindness endemic zones that are currently being treated, while another 16.1 million are located in new river blindness endemic zones that have never been treated.

During 2014, the Carter Center expanded its assistance from 8 to 13 zones in Ethiopia. With the support of Alwaleed Foundation, a total of 5,659,805 persons residing in 29,652 communities benefitted from treatment. The organization hopes to interrupt the disease’s transmission in all Ethiopian river blindness endemic areas by 2020.

Alwaleed Foundation has been supporting the Carter Center’s various health and humanitarian initiatives since 2003. This included grants to treat river blindness in Uganda in 2009 and across Latin America in 2011.