Timor-Leste’s infrastructure was almost completely destroyed in the violence that followed the vote for independence in 1999 — which also left the country without a viable health care workforce.

In response, Foresight initiated a program to address the critical burden of blindness. Foresight played a vital role in The East Timor Eye Program (ETEP), with a goal to make the nation self-sufficient in the provision of eye care by 2015 — and eradicate preventable blindness by 2020.

Key achievements

  • Trained local doctors and health workers in surgical skills
  • Financially supported East Timor’s first Ophthalmologist, Dr. Marcellino Coreia, to complete his training
  • Developed infrastructure including installing air-conditioning, lasers and microscopes for clinical and surgical care
  • Positioned Dili as a centre of training for ophthalmology and eye health workers
  • Introduced a Pediatric Ophthalmology service program in 2010