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The Children’s Eye Foundation of AAPOS

SIBA (Stop Infant Blindness in Africa) focuses on preventing the epidemic of blindness in babies that Sub-Saharan Africa faces because of a condition called Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) in its increasing number of surviving premature infants.


About SIBA

The International Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus Council (IPOSC) in partnership with the Children’s Eye Foundation of the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (CEF of AAPOS) created the Stop Infant Blindness in Africa (SIBA) initiative.

SIBA’s Goal

To provide scalable delivery of care systems with the proper equipment and specialty training to halt blindness and visual impairment from ROP in newborn babies in sub-Saharan Africa.

What is ROP?

Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) occurs when premature infants receive too much-unregulated oxygen to assist their breathing, which causes abnormal retinal blood vessels and can lead to life-long visual impairment and blindness.

ROP is usually preventable by properly regulating and monitoring oxygen in premature infants. Successful treatment is available for infants who develop ROP in NICUs (Neonatal Intensive Care Units). However, this equipment is generally unavailable in SSA. With your support, SIBA can largely stop this epidemic within three years.

SIBA’s Focus

More premature newborns are surviving in sub-Saharan neonatal care units, but most doctors in this region don’t have the equipment and training needed to treat and prevent ROP.  SIBA has established three Centers of Focus in Nigeria, Uganda, and Rwanda within Sub-Saharan Africa.  SIBA aims to provide technical assistance to medical professionals working with premature infants regarding oxygen regulation, equipment for oxygen blending and monitoring, observational training, and follow-up treatment of infants with ROP in these Centers.  Then, doctors from throughout SSA will receive advanced training in the Center and then work to halt ROP in their home country.

Your Support is Vital

The impact of childhood blindness goes beyond the apparent day to day challenges of vision loss — Blind Children in developing countries are:

-more likely to die within a few years of diagnosis

-have increased likelihood of abandonment

-unable to receive education

-unable to sustain themselves through work

-at high risk of abuse and exploitation as they are unable to identify their perpetrators.

SIBA’s Support

SIBA relies on physicians’ volunteer support in the United States and sub-Saharan Africa, grant funding, and individual donations to accomplish our mission.

Your contribution will provide the transformational gift of sight! It will impact families’ lives, communities, and future generations. A single oxygen blender and sensor which can save hundreds of babies’ sight costs less than $2,000. Consider the impact any contribution will make toward purchasing this equipment! Please join us now!

You will make the difference!

Learn more at https://givetosiba.org