Mulatu Gabre is a health officer who has worked with ORBIS in Konso, Ethiopia for more than 4 years. He has extensive knowledge and experience in eye care programs, particularly in eradicating trachoma. He knows the area very well and is actively involved in water development activities.
The impact of working in water development is beyond trachoma control and is directly related to the quality of life of the community. Major childhood killer diseases are related with poor hygiene and sanitation and scarcity of water. Hence, working or contributing towards this activity not only reduces the prevalence of trachoma, but improves quality of life throughout a community.
To reduce the episodes of trachoma ORBIS is desperately trying to transform this region. ORBIS aims to eliminate trachoma from this region not only through conducting eye surgery to correct the disease and through distributing the antibiotic zithromax (kindly donated by Pfizer), but also by improving sanitation by providing clean water and building latrines.
In the fight against blinding trachoma, the roles of schools are found to be very significant. In linking schools with Health extension workers, community health agents, integrated eye care workers and identifying children with sight problems, teachers play a central role. Through teacher training and establishing eye care clubs in schools, it is possible to access communities to bring long term behavioral changes and greater impacts at community level.
With your support we will continue to work towards completely transforming this region so the next generation can grow up free of the threat of blindness.