+27 12 452 3811 helpdesk@sancb.org.za

Bureau for the Prevention of Blindness

Bureau for the Prevention of Blindness

Founded in 1944 as an Eye Care  Division of the South African National Council for the Blind.

From 1944 to 1952 the Bureau conducted country wide surveys to determine the need for eye care services in rural communities. Based on this data, a mobile units were established in 1952 with the help of St. John Ambulance Services. This legacy,  built on decades of work, has evolved into increased eye care access for previously marginalized townships and rural people. 

Recognizing that about 80 percent of the South Africa population accesses health care services through a pressurised  public health sector, The Bureau for the Prevention of Blindness concentrates its efforts to poorly accessible rural areas and hospitals where services for the prevention of blindness is limited. Through its mobile eye care units the Bureau strengthens these existing under resourced and underserved areas.

Services rendered by the Bureau

Cataract Outreach Programme

There are two outreach teams who work in Provinces under a Memorandum of Understanding with the Provincial Departments of Health. This work is undertaken with the help of Private Partnerships. Outreach is a 5 day program and undertaken throughout the year. Our strategy relies on a multidisciplinary partnerships  to ensure the smooth running of the field programme and longer term sustainability.

School Screening

The purpose of the school screening is to end poverty cycles as we target marginalized communities for good eye health. Through a memorandum of Understanding with applicable funders, collaboration with the Department of Education who identify Schools, innumerable  numbers of learners are screened. The Optometrist might accompany the Team to manage refractions problems, treat minor ailments and refer learners to hospitals for any underlying eye conditions. If required, spectacles are made available.

Low Vision Services

This service in under development.


The ideal of this Vision is to have at least one centre per district or for every million of the rural population. Vision 2020 envisages the upgrading of facilities, expansion and training of staff.  The Bureau endorses this vision offering its ongoing support to the prevention of blindness.

Further Information

 For further information on Services Rendered by the Bureau, upcoming tours and school screening needs:

Contact: Mrs Angeline Khupe, Manager: Bureau for the Prevention of Blindness             

Email:     angelina@sancb.org.za 


Preventing Loss of Vision

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” – Helen Keller

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Pretoria, South Africa, 0181


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