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Singer / Songwriter
“We've always admired Seva's focus on serving indigenous people in the U.S. and around the world. Seva knows how to work with communities in ways that truly benefit those in need. We are honored to be involved with their mission and look forward to contributing to their efforts for years to come."
Tea Leaf Green
“I congratulate Seva Foundation for the magnificent work they continue to do."
Legendary Folk Singer
“Seva has given so much help to so many thousands of people for so many years — such a wonderful example of love in action.”
Singer / Songwriter
"For 30 years Seva has made an extraordinary contribution to the world — not only through their
international programs, but here in some of the most impoverished communities in North America, on Native American reservations. Thank you Seva."
Singer / Songwriter
"Seva takes the impulse towards generosity and turns it into compassionate action that helps people in real need. I honor my friends and relations by giving to Seva in their name — the entire world benefits. I hope you'll join me."
Actor / Writer
"Compassion and caring for people in need - that's simply a moral necessity. But it's not
always easy to do. Seva makes it easy. They know how to put your donations to work in ways that truly benefit people."
Singer / Humanitarian Activist
"When we met the folks at Seva, we knew we were among kindred spirits, joining to bring people together in service to others. Whether preventing blindness in Nepal, assisting native peoples in Guatemala and Mexico, or helping our own Native Americans, Seva has been there to help alleviate suffering and improve people's lives. Long may they rock!"
The Grateful Dead
Center for Innovation in Eye Care
Spotlight - VMANNN, West Bengal, India
Just as Seva service programs reach out to provide eye care to people in need, Seva's Global Sight Initiative is focused on helping eye hospitals improve.
Seva organizes and helps to fund the effortsof nine "mentor" eye care institutions. Mentors share their expertise with eye hospitals seeking to strengthen their services and sustainability.
"At the core of this approach is a mentor hospital that demonstrates the high volume, high quality, sustainable services that mentees strive to achieve," explains Dr. Sandra Dratler, a Seva Advisor. "The mentor serves as the 'laboratory' — a place where mentees can see practical daily processes in real-time." Mentors can easily relate to the issues facingeye hospitals in their quest to reach the many people who need services in their communities.
Seva's network of mentor institutions has worked through the various challenges. They have developed important strategies for the establishment of high-quality surgical programs, attract and retain professional staff willing to work in rural areas, and are successful at building visibility within the community.
By sharing these strategies, mentee hospitals learn to rapidly increase the number of patients served — with a particular focus on providing care to the poor.
Seva is proud to highlight one such mentor eye hospital — the Vivekananda Mission Asram Netra Niramay Niketan (VMANNN) located in rural West Bengal, India, which serves an area comprising approximately 10 million people.
VMANNN joined Seva's Global Sight Initiative as a mentor institution in 2006. The staff of VMANNN knows the challenges facing hospitals that want to provide quality services Center for Innovation in Eye Care Spotlight — VMANNN, West Bengal, India to all patients — they have been focused on self-sustainable comprehensive eye care delivery in their community for nearly 20 years.
With support from Seva Foundation and other Global Sight Initiative partners, VMANNN now provides training and capacity building services to six other hospitals in Seva's network.
It takes time and consideration to assess hospitals and build relationships with potential partners to ensure it is a successful partnership. VMANNN's Chief Medical Offi cer Dr. Subhra Sil notes that "we look for partners with good management, committed doctors, and good teamwork between clinical and non-clinical."
"VMANNN is like our parent — they look out for us and want us to grow," explains mentee partner Ashim Pramanik with Sundarban Social Development Center (SSDC).
With VMANNN's assistance, SSDC has increased its number of cataract surgeries by 23% since it joined Seva's Global Sight Initiative in 2009.
Mentee hospital staff regularly learn from watching VMANNN in action.
When Purnima, another VMANNN mentee, visited for the fi rst time, the staff noted how important it had been to have the opportunity to observe VMANNN's outreach camps.
In rural areas, people do not know that eye care services exist or that services could restore their sight. VMANNN's rural screening activities were very effective in building that critical awareness as a fi rst step to reaching underserved communities.
This was an important lesson for Purnima in how to attract more patients. The benefi ts of the partnership are not just one way. "When you try to analyze someone else's systems you have to analyze your own," said VMANNN's director, Dr. Asim Sil. "Let us interact. The more we interact the more we benefi t."