Orbis Announces Five-Year Partnership Renewal with OMEGA


The watchmaker’s support will bolster the global nonprofit’s work to end avoidable blindness

NEW YORK, Dec. 19, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Today, eye care nonprofit Orbis International announced its renewed partnership with the Swiss watchmaker OMEGA, which will provide the organization with $2.5M over the next five years. The generous support will bolster Orbis’s work to train eye care teams in areas with the greatest need so they can provide quality care to patients.


OMEGA has been a generous supporter of Orbis for over a decade. Recently, the watchmaker was the Title Sponsor of a training project on board the Flying Eye Hospital for women in eye care from conflict-affected countries. Photo: Geoff Oliver Bugbee.

OMEGA has been a generous supporter of Orbis for over a decade. Recently, the watchmaker was the Title Sponsor of a training project on board the Flying Eye Hospital for women in eye care from conflict-affected countries. Photo: Geoff Oliver Bugbee.

“Around the world, some 1 billion people live with vision loss that is entirely preventable or treatable, but they simply don’t have access to the care they need,” said Derek Hodkey, President and Chief Executive Officer of Orbis International. “Our work to create a world where no one loses their sight from avoidable causes is only possible because of generous supporters like OMEGA who believe in our mission, and we cannot overstate our gratitude for their longstanding partnership.”

OMEGA has been a proud supporter of Orbis since 2011, when it became a Global Corporate Partner. Through avid support of the Flying Eye Hospital – the world’s only fully accredited ophthalmic teaching hospital on board an MD-10 plane – OMEGA has helped Orbis in its mission to mentor, train, and inspire local teams so they can save sight in their communities.

Raynald Aeschlimann, President and CEO of OMEGA said, “It’s an honour to extend our partnership with this life-changing organisation. For more than a decade, OMEGA has been witnessing the incredible work of Orbis, who embrace our own values of innovation, pioneering spirit, and meaningful change. We look forward to continuing our support of this vital mission.”

OMEGA also works in cooperation with its brand ambassadors – including Daniel Craig, Cindy Crawford, and others – to increase awareness of Orbis and its mission. As part of two insightful documentaries, Craig and Crawford participated in Orbis programming in Mongolia and Peru, respectively, witnessing firsthand the life-changing work of Orbis. Additionally, OMEGA provides cuddly teddy bears to all young patients undergoing treatment on the Flying Eye Hospital.

Most recently, OMEGA was the Title Sponsor of a first-of-its-kind training project held on board the Flying Eye Hospital in Doha, Qatar, for women in eye care from conflict-affected areas. Ophthalmologists and nurses from Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen took part in simulation training using cutting-edge technology available on the Flying Eye Hospital. Simulation training ensures that each step normally taken when treating a patient can be safely practiced as many times as needed, growing confidence and skills that the participants can take back to their countries. The project – which was the first in-person training conducted internationally on the Flying Eye Hospital since the start of the pandemic – was launched under the leadership of, and thanks to, Qatar Fund for Development and Qatar Charity. Additional partners assisting the project included Qatar Airways, Qatar Executive and Hamad International Airport, which provided on-the-ground support.

Last year, OMEGA was the exclusive Title Sponsor of a virtual Flying Eye Hospital project that trained ophthalmic nurses across Mongolia on treatment for cataracts, the leading cause of blindness in the country, and globally, despite being treatable with an operation that can take as little as ten to fifteen minutes. In 2020, Orbis reimagined in-person Flying Eye Hospital trainings as virtual ones to ensure that eye care teams could still access critical training safely during the pandemic. With the plane now returning to in-person programming, the virtual model Orbis developed is being used in conjunction with in-person training, a concept known as “blended learning,” to ensure that participants can maximize the time with their mentors, continue their education after the plane leaves, and more.

About Orbis

Orbis is a leading global non-governmental organization that has been a pioneer in the prevention and treatment of avoidable blindness for four decades. Orbis transforms lives by delivering the skills, resources and knowledge needed to deliver accessible quality eye care. Working in collaboration with local partners, including hospitals, universities, government agencies and ministries of health, Orbis provides hands-on ophthalmology training, strengthens healthcare infrastructure and advocates for the prioritization of eye health on public health agendas. Orbis operates the world’s only Flying Eye Hospital, a fully accredited ophthalmic teaching hospital on board an MD-10 aircraft, and an award-winning telemedicine platform, Cybersight. For the past ten consecutive years, Orbis has achieved Charity Navigator‘s coveted four-star rating for demonstrating strong financial health and commitment to accountability and transparency, placing Orbis in the top 3% of U.S. charities. For the past two years, Orbis has earned GuideStar‘s platinum Seal of Transparency. In 2022, Orbis earned “accredited charity” status from the Better Business Bureau by meeting all 20 of their standards for charity accountability. To learn more, please visit orbis.org.

About OMEGA

OMEGA is a prestigious Swiss watchmaker and member of the Swatch Group Ltd. Since 1848, the brand has been synonymous with excellence, innovation and precision, as well as a pioneering spirit, demonstrated by conquests of the oceans and space. In fact, since 1965, the OMEGA Speedmaster has been worn on each of NASA’s manned missions including all six moon landings. As well as this, no brand is more actively involved in sports timekeeping. In addition to partnerships in golf, sailing, athletics and swimming, OMEGA has served as the Official Timekeeper at 30 Olympic Games. Most importantly, OMEGA has a tradition of excellence in watchmaking. This reputation was reinforced in 2015 with the introduction of METAS-approved Master Chronometer certification, representing the Swiss industry’s highest standard of precision, magnetic resistance and performance.

MEDIA CONTACTS

Orbis International

Kristin Taylor

Vice President, Global Communications and Marketing

kristin.taylor@orbis.org

OMEGA

OMEGA International Press Office

press@omega.ch 

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