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Celebrity Googlebox actress to voice Sightsavers appeal

The charity is raising funds to help fight trachoma

Sunetra Sarker

Actress, Sunetra Sarker, will lend her voice to Sightsavers this month when she launches the charity’s BBC Radio 4 appeal.

For seven days from yesterday (Sunday 27 June), Sarker will share the story of Zuwaira, a Nigerian woman who had suffered from trachoma for 27 years, until she received surgery to save her sight and was consequently able to care for her children independently and now plans to return to work.

Speaking about the condition, Zuwaira shared: “When it started, my eyes were itchy. I would rub them continuously and they’d become painful and teary. After the surgery, I kept dancing. I was astonished and appreciative of the people who made the surgery possible. My eyes met my husband’s and I felt unspeakable joy.”

Trachoma is the world’s leading infectious cause of blindness. Globally, nearly two million people are blind or visually impaired as a result of the condition.

Sarker, who has appeared in Ackley Bridge and Celebrity Googlebox, hopes her involvement in the appeal will raise awareness of the disease and the difference that Sightsavers’ work can make.

“I’ve seen first-hand how Sightsavers prevents sight loss and avoidable blindness,” she explained, adding: “Its vision is of a world where no one is blind from avoidable causes, and I’d love more people to help Sightsavers eliminate diseases and give people their sight back.”

Trachoma can be prevented and treated through better sanitation, antibiotics and surgery. Funds raised through the appeal will be used to treat people with the condition.