About Vision for a Nation

Vision for a Nation Foundation is an award-winning UK charity that supports health ministries to build access to local and affordable eye care.

Our first national programme is underway in Rwanda where we have trained over 2,700 nurses to provide life-changing eye care services across Rwanda.

We are now taking our work to other emerging nations around the world.

Organisation History

Vision for a Nation was founded to address the urgent global need for eye care. An estimated 2.5 billion people suffer from uncorrected poor vision.

The charity was launched by venture philanthropist James Chen in 2011. James is also the founder of adjustable eyewear company Adlens Limited and global vision campaign Clearly.

In 2012, we started helping the Government of Rwanda to train nurses in every health centre across the country to provide front-line eye care and affordable glasses.


Founder: James Chen

Chairman: John Rhodes

Chief Executive Officer: Tony Hulton

Rwanda Country Director: Abdallah Uwihoreye

Media Contact Information

Strategy & Communications Director: Sebastian Ford


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By the Numbers

  • 2,728 nurses trained
  • 2,223,000 eye screenings conducted
  • 1,167,000 eye drops dispensed
  • 223,000 referrals for specialist treatment
  • 166,000 glasses provided

Milestone Achievements


Completed a pilot to test different models in one of Rwanda’s 30 districts

Rwanda initiative publically launched at the Clinton Global Initiative in New York


Registered as a charity in England and Wales

Innovative training curriculum developed by Dr Ciku Mathenge that allows nurses to be trained in just three days – a significant innovation in global eye care.


Agreement with the Government of Rwanda to become the lead NGO for Primary Eye Care

Office established in Rwanda’s capital Kigali and the programme was launched


The UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) awarded the Foundation with a £250,000 Global Poverty Action Fund Innovation grant

The first 1,000 nurses were trained across every health centre in Rwanda

An independent evaluation found the training “very effective” and 83% of patients cared for reported high satisfaction levels


A pilot was undertaken in Rwanda’s Eastern Province using Rwanda’s Community Health Workers for eye care outreach.


National outreach campaign was launched that involves health centre nurses visiting all of the 15,000 villages in Rwanda

UBS Optimus Foundation awarded the charity with a major £1.2 million grant


Win top prize at the Civil Society Charity Awards for International Aid & Development

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine launch first-of-its-kind research on our work in Rwanda

Shortlisted for three Third Sector Excellence Awards and one Charity Times Award

International Press Coverage

IAPB February 2016

Guardian October 2015

Optician August 2015

CCTV February 2015

Associated Press January 2015

Voice of America January 2015

The Sunday Times November 2014

The Independent November 2014

Think Progress November 2014

BBC November 2014

Annual Reports

Rwanda Gallery