Seva - Compassion in Action
Your Compassion Can Change The World
Your Compassion Can Change The World
Your Compassion Can Change The World
Your Compassion Can Change The World
Seva News
Seva Foundation

"Seva's efforts create hope and happiness worldwide for so many people in difficult conditions. I've always been amazed and cheered by their good works and I've been very happy to help them in their fundraising efforts."

Bruce Hornsby
Singer / Songwriter

Seva Foundation

“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

Seva Foundation

“I congratulate Seva Foundation for the magnificent work they continue to do."

Legendary Folk Singer

Seva Foundation

“Seva has given so much help to so many thousands of people for so many years — such a wonderful example of love in action.”

Bonnie Raitt
Singer / Songwriter

Seva Foundation

"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."

Jackson Browne
Singer / Songwriter

Seva Foundation

"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."

Peter Coyote
Actor / Writer

Seva Foundation

"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."

Joan Baez
Singer / Humanitarian Activist

Seva Foundation

"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!"

Phil Lesh
The Grateful Dead

Ama's Story
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Two out of three people who are blind are women and girls. Your compassion restored Ama's eyesight, and is helping to increase access to eye care for women around the globe.

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Poverty Causes Blindness
Dr. Ken Bassett on the cataract challenge

Cataract, the clouding of the lens of the eye, occurs with age.  Blindness due to cataract occurs with poverty.

In the west, almost no one becomes blind from cataract.  Cataract is diagnosed early when impairment is minimal, and surgical treatment almost always restores near-normal sight.

In low-income countries, almost everyone with cataract becomes blind.  Cataract is diagnosed late when impairment is severe.

The difference between cataract in high and low income countries is not the condition or its treatment.  All populations offer similar high quality cataract surgery.  Therefore, the difference is timing.

old woman navy hat leaning against red wall

In the west, cataract surgical services catch people up-stream as they age, before they become blind.  In low-income countries, cataract surgical services work down-stream in the deep accumulated pool of older cataract blind.

The problem in most low-income countries is that they developed their cataract surgical service after their population aged beyond 50 years, and 5-10% of them became blind.  Their cataract surgical services face this accumulated mass of cases.  Meanwhile, the population ages and more and more cases pour in.

In most low-income countries, there are five times as many in the pool of blind people needing surgery as the number of people who become blind every year.  Even with a large investment in cataract surgical services it takes a decade or more to deal with the backlog, while meeting annual incoming needs. 

Seva programs are situated where the backlog is greatest and services are least.  As a result, their cataract surgical services require substantial expansion, far beyond those expected by people living in high income western countries, where cataract blindness is seldom, if ever, found.

Ken Bassett MD PhD is the Program Director for Seva Canada and Director of the BC Centre for Epidemiologic and International Ophthalmology.

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