Major international exhibition in Sydney to highlight avoidable blindness

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An exhibition featuring the work of five award-winning photojournalists will highlight the issue of avoidable blindness as part of an international meeting on the blinding eye disease trachoma.

The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust’s “Time to See” exhibition was officially launched last November at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Malta and has been viewed by Her Majesty The Queen and His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, as well as Heads of Commonwealth Governments.

It has now arrived in Sydney and is on display in conjunction with the annual meeting of GET2020 (Global Elimination of Trachoma by 2020).

Global experts attending the conference will be tackling the issue of trachoma head on with less than four years to reach the elimination target.

The exhibition will be launched by The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust Australian Representative and Executive Chairman The Hon Major General Michael Jeffery AC, AO (Mil), CVO, MC (Retd).

Major General Jeffery said,

“All of us involved in celebrating Her Majesty The Queen’s outstanding 60 years tenure as Head of the Commonwealth, by expediting the elimination of preventable blindness world-wide, through the auspices of The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust, have been delighted with progress to date, including in remote Aboriginal communities of Australia.”

As part of a programme to eliminate blinding trachoma, The Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust is working with the Government of Australia, Vision 2020 Australia, the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation, The Fred Hollows Foundation and the University of Melbourne Indigenous Eye Health Unit to promote face washing and hygiene in community locations such as schools, childcare centres and sports clubs.

Time To See aims to bring to the attention of the Commonwealth and the world the impact of avoidable blindness, and the solutions available to end it.

Five multi-award winning photojournalists – Ashley Gilbertson, Poulomi Basu, Sam Faulkner, Andrew Quilty, and Adam Ferguson – visited seven countries across the Commonwealth to document the impact avoidable blindness can have on people and communities and the efforts to address it.

Forty-one of the images from the exhibition have been brought to Australia. These comprise: 11 trachoma images from Australia’s Yalata and Utju communities, four images from Fiji, 13 from Kenya, four from India, two from Uganda, five from Pakistan and three from Nigeria.

The photos highlight eye conditions including trachoma, retinopathy of prematurity, diabetic retinopathy and childhood blindness.

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