It's 25 years since the beginning of this incredible organisation and, in that time, we've performed millions of operations and eye treatments.

But behind the stats are people and their stories. To celebrate this milestone, we did some digging around and found some amazing images that capture the raw emotion and humanity behind our work. They remind us... this is why we do what we do. 

1. Azmera's "beautiful" correction

Woman with trichiasisPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

Azmera's bilateral lower lid trichiasis caused her pain for six years. We were able to help her and the correction was “beautiful” according to her surgeon.

2. Children recovering from surgery

Children recovering from eye surgeryPhotographer: Brendan Esposito

Children recover from surgery at Phu Yen Eye Centre in south central Vietnam. In 2008, more than 50 children received treatment over several days during 'The Sight of Children' childhood blindness campaign.

3. A patient being examined in Eritrea

Eritrea woman being examinedPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

Dr Fitsum Ghebre-Hannes looks at Fatna Omer, 65, in her village of Kegal, Eritrea, in 1993. She had a mature cataract and was being examined to see if her sight could be restored.

4. Sombre women await surgery  

Photographer: Lannon Harley

Cataract patients wait to be admitted into surgery at Massawa Hospital eye unit in Eritrea.

5. Trachoma education 

trachoma face washingPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

Trachoma is the leading infectious cause of blindness today. Educating people about hygiene and face washing is one of the most effective ways to prevent the disease. 

6. Smiles that light up the world

indigenous children AustraliaPhotographer: Joe Boughton-Dent

Children from the Wugularr community, east of Katherine (Northern Territory, Australia).

7. The bright colours of (Reggie) Uluru 

UluruPhotographer: Barry Skipsey

Reggie Uluru, 72, is a traditional owner of the Uluru area. He travelled 460 kilometres by bus to Alice Springs from his community, Mutitjulu, at the base of Uluru, to receive cataract surgery.

8. Surgeon/patient rapport 

Patient surgeon rapport

Professor Angus Turner prepares his patient Mavis Arnott for cataract surgery, at Port Hedland Hospital (5 June 2014). She'd never seen her 14-year-old granddaugher before surgery.

9. Waiting and praying 

Patients in ladakhPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

At a Ladakh eye camp, more than 260 patients received cataract surgery during the three day camp led by Dr Sanduk Ruit.

10. Nabiritha claps with joy 

Kenya surgery childPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

Nabiritha, seven-years-old, had bilateral cataract. Her parents couldn't afford surgery until The Foundation was able to help her.

11. Fred Hollows in action 

Fred Hollows IndigenousPhoto: Stephen Ellison

Our namesake and founder, Fred Hollows, inspects the eyes of an Aboriginal man. 

12. I'm three and now I can see

Vann CambodiaPhotographer: Andy Nilsen

Vann, a young girl from Cambodia, had suffered from bilateral cataract since birth. But her operation was a success - and now she's firmly focussed on her future. 


13. Seeing her baby for the first time

Thol surgeryPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

Thol was 46 and had been completely blind for a year and a half. Abandoned by her husband and with four children to support, she had never seen her baby Cheet - until this moment. 

14. The blind monk

Monk surgeryPhotographer: Hanh Tran

Sun Chern was a 62-year-old monk in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Being blind meant he couldn't serve his community. 

15. Preparing himself for surgery

Surgeon preparingPhotographer: Hugh Rutherford

Dr Phetsamone, the only ophthalmologist in this Laotian province, prepares himself to operate on five-year-old Hao.   

16. Up close with a corneal transplant patient 

corneal transplantPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

Corneal transplantation, also known as corneal grafting, is a surgical procedure where a damaged or diseased cornea is replaced by donated corneal tissue (the graft).

17. Can I take the patches off?

patches surgeryPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

After corneal transplant, a Nepalese patient is excited and impatient to see again. 


18. Heavens above, I can see! 

patient rejoices cataract surgeryPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

At an outreach camp at the Pullahari Monastery in Kathmandu, Nepal, a patient rejoices after his patches come off. 

19. Candid camera 

thursday island cataract surgeryPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

On Thursday Island, Dr Garry Brian watches, amused, as a cataract patient smiles with joy following surgery that restored her sight. 

20. The joy of sight - and noodles

Noodles surgery childPhotographer: Viet Huynh Ba

Hanh Chi, five, happily slurps noodles after cataract surgery. "I want to become a doctor to cure all of my mother's diseases," she said.

21. Pure bliss for the amazing Madam May

Madam May storyPhotographer: Michael Amendolia

87-year-old Vietnamese grandmother, Madam May had successful cataract surgery. After a life of hardship, her greatest bliss was being able to see her five great-grandchildren play.

22. Forcing the words through her eyes 

Cam reading blind childPhotographer: Mary Tran

Seven-year-old Cam was desperate to read but she couldn't see. She'd hold books as close to eyes as possible, breaking her young mother's heart. 

23. Walking a long road to sight 

walking landscapePhotographer: Sandy Scheltema

People in Macibini, South Africa who'd heard about a Foundation blindness prevention program make their way to a village to see if they can be helped to see again. 

24. How many fingers am I holding up?

Eye finger touchingPhotographer:Mary Tran

An outreach eye camp helps patients like this one in Nepal. The camp was held by the Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology (TIO) after the 7.8 magnitude earthquake in April 2015.

25. I'll hold your hand 

Small child hand surgeryPhotographer: Kabir Dhanji

Little Samuel was born blind, and the only thing that kept him calm was the sound of his mother singing. 

Did you enjoy these photos? It's only a snippet of what we do. Learn more about the work of The Fred Hollows Foundation


$25 can restore sight
$25 can restore sight

$25 can restore sight

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