Restoring Sight to the Cataract-Blinded Impoverished People in East Africa

The life limiting disease is the leading cause of blindness around the world, taking eyesight of some 20 million people.

But cataracts, which are caused when a protein slowly builds up and clouds the eye’s lens, leading to blurred vision and eventually blindness is actually easily treatable. After a 10 minutes’ surgery, the vast majority of patients will regain their sight.

However, barriers to treatment are significant. In many corners of the globe, the $150 surgery represents a small fortune – if it is offered at all in local hospitals.

What We Are Doing to Help

United Hands Relief organizes Cataract Eye Surgeries Missions in countries like Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Sudan. With the support of our donors, UHR covers the cost of these surgeries fully for 250 plus patients at a time. These missions are carries out multiple times a year.

After surgeries are performed, crowds of patients wait in the open air with bandages over their eyes. Normally patients have been patiently blind for months, or even years due to cataracts. Each of these patients had undergone a ten-minute surgery the day before to remove the cataracts and insert artificial lenses.

As the bandages come off, some patients cry, other dance in joy. Some hug the doctors, and others sit back in their seats in disbelief as they see the faces of their loved ones again.

Often in developed countries like USA, cataracts are usually removed before causing any serious damage to the eye or causing visual impairment. However, in developing nations, people often lose their sight, including children.

Today, with advanced modern surgeries, removing cataracts could be done quickly at any medical facility, not necessarily hospitals at a low cost. With the new techniques today, most patients go to have perfect vision the next day.

Our Goal

The project’s goal is to wipe out preventable blindness through developing countries in East Africa- countries already struggling with drought, famine, poverty, violence and conflict.

The cost of one surgery is $150.

Give them the gift of sight. Donate Now.

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While UHR Gaza teams have been implementing projects, Marwa Abu Khater was one of the most dedicated volunteers. Marwa has witnessed the suffering and hardships of vulnerable families, especially children. Marwa had a vision inspired by the need she witnessed among children and adolescents in Gaza. UHR listened and today, thanks to our donors, Marwa got the chance she was seeking.

United Hands Relief helped Marwa establish RUIA Center for training and Development – a center that offers intensive training, tutoring and rehab sessions to help improve academic performance for students in elementary, middle, and high school. RUIA also offers select programs in personal and skills/professional development for college students, graduates and professionals.

RUIA center offers its programs free of charge to those who cannot contribute a payment, and receives very minimal fees from some students.

Mohammad Barhoom, an 11th grades said: “I was having problems understanding foundational mathematical concepts. After enrolling in the improvement program at Ruia Center I began improving steadily and now I am one of the achievers in my class and get near perfect scores on my exams.”

As for Manar Ahmad, she said “my English reading, comprehension and composition writing has improved a lot since I joined RUIA. I used to have difficulty understanding my teachers. My parents and I am very thankful for this tutoring opportunity that is free. We are very poor and my father is unemployed. My parents are trying hard to keep me in school, and my dream is to be an English teacher.”

In light of the instability and economic crisis in Gaza, Marwa Abu Khater, RUIA Center Director wanted to contribute her knowledge as an English teacher to her community.

Training is critical to achieving skills that can translate to better jobs or livelihood prospects. UHR’s sustainable development projects directly provide individuals with employment opportunities across various sectors – farming, education, construction and more.

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Gaza Families Living Among the Dead in a Cemetery Are Calling for Our Help


Dozens of poverty-stricken families have made a graveyard their home, because they have nowhere else to go. Most of them are unemployed, with no money, food, or clean clothes. The do not even have their own pots and pans to cook themselves a simple meal.

Children sleep on tombs surrounded by insects, rats and scorpions. And most of the time, these vulnerable children go to sleep hungry.

UHR is working so hard to try to relocate these families into safe home. So far, we were able to relocate 7 families into decent homes, and provided them with basic necessities like food, water, hygiene kits, refrigerators, cooking stoves, furniture and clothing.

UHR also helps these families become self-sufficient through micro-financing small businesses for the. With UHR’s Palestine Livelihoods Micro-finance fund, we provide working capital to low income families to help reduce poverty, generate employment and help them generate income. Since its inception in 2016, UHR Palestine Livelihoods Micro-finance fund has supported a number of families in Gaza and the West Bank. It helped impoverished smart individuals become grocers, farmers, drivers, and others that run small businesses to support their families and bring hope to their communities.

  • $250 will provide shelter and food for one month
  • $1,500 will provide shelter and food for six months for one family
  • $3,000 will sponsor a family for one year
  • $2,500 will establish a small business for a family (e.g. purchase a delivery cart)
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United Hands Relief is preparing to deliver more life-saving emergency relief aid to people in Gaza providing food, vital water and sanitation, winter kits, heaters, and blankets.

A shipment of medical supplies and medicines is on its way to Gaza.

The Situation

22 Palestinians were killed and 69 civilians wounded as violence flares up in the Gaza Strip. Our team on the ground reported that over 100 homes have been destroyed since Tuesday.

As severe weather begins to approach, and with the current escalation, an estimated 2.5 million people need vital humanitarian assistance in Gaza. Donate today to help us reach affected families.

  • $60 will provide clean water for one month
  • $100 will provide a food package with nutritious food items
  • $150 will provide a food package with nutritious food items, and milk for infants and toddlers
  • $160 will provide a winter kit, heater, and food package
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