Since its launch in 2003, $50 million has been raised for Seeing is Believing, which has been used to tackle avoidable blindness in disadvantaged communities across Standard Chartered’s markets in Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
The $50 million milestone follows the commitment made by Standard Chartered at the Clinton Global Initiative in September 2011 to raise $100 million by 2020 to help eliminate avoidable blindness – reinforcing the bank’s ‘Here for good’ brand promise.
The bank not only promotes and coordinates fundraising for Seeing is Believing, but also matches every dollar raised. The $50 million milestone equates to $25 million in raised funds and $25 million in matched funds.
Richard Meddings, Group Finance director at Standard Chartered and chairman of Seeing is Believing, said: “When we launched Seeing is Believing in 2003, I could hardly have imagined that come mid-2012, we’d have raised $50 million. Support for the cause has been fantastic, both from within Standard Chartered and outside the bank.
Every dollar raised is matched by Standard Chartered and these funds have helped us reach over 28 million people in communities where eye care was once unaffordable or inaccessible. In millions of cases, the lives of adults and children have been transformed, through simple treatments and affordable surgeries. I’ve seen the results first-hand, and they are nothing short of remarkable. We are now focused on raising the next $50 million, thereby reaching our goal of raising $100 million by 2020.”
The $50 million raised for Seeing is Believing has helped fund more than 2.8 million eye operations, 4.9 million eye-care screenings and has enabled over 168,000 pairs of eye glasses to be distributed across Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Through Seeing is Believing, NGOs have helped move eye care up the public healthcare agenda in countries such as China, Ghana, Indonesia, Vietnam and South Africa.
Staff engagement is and continues to be an essential part of Seeing is Believing. A large number of Standard Chartered’s 87,000 employees use their paid volunteering leave to raise funds or to support eye-care NGOs by raising awareness of eye-care issues in their local communities.
Hoang Anh (vir.com.vn)