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DOHA: November 25, 2017. Qatar Airways has renewed its sponsorship of Orbis UK, the global charity that fights avoidable blindness through access to quality eye care, for a further three years.

Sophie Countess of WessexThe non-profit's third generation 'Flying Eye' took off in June 2016 following the conversion of an MD10 donated by FedEx and is the world's only flying ophthalmic teaching hospital featuring live broadcast capabilities to train doctors, nurses and healthcare professionals.

Qatar Airways has been an Orbis sponsor since 2012 together with L'Occitane, the Alcon Foundation and Omega - plus FedEx that flies and maintains the aircraft. Since it began in 1982, the Flying Eye has delivered programs in 78 countries and over 10 million treatments in a single year.

"Qatar Airways strongly believes in giving back to the global community and to making a difference," said Qatar Airways group CEO Akbar Al Baker. "As an airline that connects communities and people around the world, we are delighted to continue our support for Orbis for another three years as Official Airline Partner."

The announcement followed the arrival in Qatar by Britain's ambassador for the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness, HRH Sophie The Countess of Wessex. (Left of picture with Orbis UK Trustee Robert Walters.)

The countess had been visiting a 'Qatar Creating Vision' program in Dhaka and Chittagong, Bangladesh that brings together three charities and 19 hospitals with the goal of providing 5.5 million child eye tests and treatments to children in India and Bangladesh before 2020.

In Doha she met with Al Baker to celebrate the Qatar initiative that launched in October 2015 and has since conducted 2.4 million eye tests and provided over 27,000 training sessions to doctors, teachers and community workers to reach those living with unnecessary blindness.

Khalifa bin Jassim Al Kuwari, director general of the Qatar Fund for Development commented: "Many people take vision for granted and don't realize how significant eye problems can be, particularly for children in the developing world. Half of childhood vision loss can be prevented or cured, so there is much that we can do to improve access to eye care, which everyone deserves."

http://www.qatarcreatingvision.org/

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