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Countess of Wessex visits London school to show support for important campaign

Sophie is a global ambassador for the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness

sophie wessex world sight day school
Danielle Stacey
Danielle StaceyOnline Royal CorrespondentLondon
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The Countess of Wessex has shown her support for the #LoveYourEyes campaign that encourages everyone to think about the importance of their own eye health.

To mark World Sight Day and in her role as a global ambassador for the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB), Sophie visited Perseid School in London, a school that works with children and young people aged three to 19, who have special educational needs and learning disabilities, to see children having their eyes tested.

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WATCH: Countess of Wessex visits school to show support for the #LoveYourEyes campaign

The Countess said: "The key thing I have learnt with all my work from Vision 2020 and IAPB is that the vision sector has really come together over the years, especially for World Sight Day.

"What is really inspiring to see, is that best practices are so easily shared through IAPB. These best practices can hopefully influence everything else and improve the lives of millions around the world who have poor vision."

The #LoveYourEyes campaign for World Sight Day on 14 October is encouraging people to book a sight test. This follows evidence that the pandemic is putting global eye health at risk – the number of children developing short-sightedness doubled under lockdown and, on current trends, half the world's population will be short-sighted by 2050.

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sophie wessex visits school world sight day© IAPB

The Countess met pupils at Perseid School

Peter Holland, CEO of IAPB said: "The success of this year's World Sight Day and our Love Your Eyes campaign has been unparalleled, and I've been delighted and proud of what we have done together.

"Every test pledged, every screening held, and every social media message sent has meant that we were able to reach more people than ever before with over three million pledging to love their eyes.

sophie wessex world sight day meeting© IAPB

Sophie praised the work of IAPB

"But the scale of the challenge we face is immense. The pandemic struck a massive blow to global eye health, and we must continue to act to save millions from unnecessary blindness."

To mark World Sight Day in 2020, Sophie and the Queen held a joint call with the IAPB and three eye health professionals from around the world.

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