You change lives.
Eversight partners with individuals, surgeons, advocates, the Lions and other organizations, and communities around the world to change lives by providing new hope and access to sight-restoring care.
A 501(c)3 charitable organization since 1947, Eversight is the largest nonprofit eye bank network. We work with the families of those who donate the gift of sight for corneal transplantation and research. We work with surgeons and researchers to provide that gift and ensure safe, successful sight-restoring transplants for more than 8,000 people every year as well as research to improve patient outcomes and one day end preventable blindness.
We are much more than an eye bank.
- Leading clinical excellence, such as our work leading the industry last year in developing and implementing a new technique to prevent contamination at the time of corneal tissue procurement.
- Pioneering research, at the Eversight Center for Vision and Eye Banking Research and in partnership with leading institutions like the Cleveland Clinic and University of Michigan Kellogg Eye Center. In 2019, the Eye Bank Association of America presented its coveted High Impact Research Grant for our work with the University of Melbourne Centre for Eye Research Australia, for research into therapies that may mitigate the global cornea shortage.
- Innovations, which enable surgeons to improve transplant techniques and patient outcomes.
- Global humanitarian impact, working with international medical communities to build capacity and develop solutions where the need for sight restoration is most critical.
The need is clear.
Blinding eye diseases affect 80 million Americans, who are unable to see loved ones, drive to work or read the newspaper. Vision loss results in an annual economic impact of $51.4 billion.
Globally, an estimated 285 million people are visually impaired—many with preventable conditions but without access to treatment due to insufficient eye tissue donation and inadequate vision health infrastructures.
The good news is that sight-restoring corneal transplantation, eye banking, vision treatment and research are changing rapidly with innovations in technology, therapies and practices that provide optimal outcomes to help many more people.
Yet it’s important to understand that corneal donation and transplantation is only part of the solution. Many debilitating eye diseases like diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration are not related to the cornea, and no effective treatment or cures exist.
Incidence of non-corneal diseases is growing.
These conditions require addressing damaged retinal tissue to restore vision. Promising research is underway, investigating environmental and genetic factors as well as the potential for retinal cell transplant, drugs, laser therapy and gene therapy.
By far, though, the top challenge for researchers doing this work is obtaining diseased human retina tissue to study. Researchers report waiting years for the right type of eye tissue to be donated and provided. Eye banks that manage eye donations have traditionally focused solely on the cornea, and thus lack the capabilities to recover and provide other anatomical parts of the human eye for this research. A whole new approach is needed.
All this can change.
Our vision is clear.
Eversight has a record of outcomes and proven achievement in what we set out to accomplish. We are proud to have earned a GuideStar 2019 Platinum Seal of Transparency for communicating the work we’re doing and demonstrating the progress we’re making toward our mission.
We make this progress while working hard to manage the rising cost and complexity of ensuring we and surgeons with whom we work are on top of the latest skills, advanced processes, technologies and evidence-based practice in tissue preparation and preservation—amid increased demands on eye banks and declining reimbursement fees for services.
In 2020, we aim to change even more lives. Through the Eversight 2020 Vision Campaign, we seek to raise $1.5 million in these areas where you can make a difference:
- Gift of Sight charitable support. The Gift of Sight program provides for under- and uninsured patients who can’t afford sight-restoring transplants. Funded entirely through charitable donations, it covers our costs providing the medically safe tissue that will allow these patients in need to see once again.
- Research and innovations. The Eversight Center for Vision and Eye Banking Research is pioneering research that promises new therapies and ways to prevent blindness, including focus on retinal procurement, preparation and research to one day treat and prevent non-corneal vision loss. This year, our goal is to hire and train the additional necessary staff and fully equip the Eversight Center for Vision and Eye Banking Research for expanding this groundbreaking work.
- Education and training. Corneal transplantation, eye banking, vision treatment and research are changing rapidly with innovations in technology, therapies and practices. Support ensures the supplies and resources we need to ensure our clinical and research staff—and cornea transplant surgeons and vision health researchers who rely on us—are consistently up to date on the latest recovery, evaluation and processing techniques that lead to the best possible patient outcomes.
- Global humanitarian outreach. Eversight is working to help establish infrastructure for eye banking, donation and transplantation in developing countries where millions suffer from preventable blindness. Equipment, medical staff training, information systems development, facilities and implementation support are needed.
- Facilities. In 2019, Eversight invested in a critical upgrade by moving its Ann Arbor, Michigan, headquarters to a larger building. Our expanded clinical laboratory space—where donor corneal tissue is evaluated and prepared—includes three sophisticated tissue processing rooms with additional space for a fourth as Eversight continues to grow along with the need for our work. Naming opportunities at various levels are available. Your philanthropic support ensures the technology, equipment and facility refinements in Michigan and all of our locations that enable us to continue serving surgeons, patients and donor families to the best of our ability.
- The Garden. At the center of Eversight’s mission are the selfless individuals and their families who give the precious gift of sight for transplantation and research. With support underwriting the costs of design, landscaping, labor and supplies, these individuals will be recognized in the center of our headquarters through a newly commissioned scenic garden.
- The Eversight Fund (unrestricted giving). Giving to our general operating fund provides much needed funding and flexibility as we provide essential services to donor families, surgeons, transplant recipients and communities. It bolsters our overall ability to strengthen our people, equipment and technology to meet needs that arise throughout the year.
You change lives.
We are a thriving and mission-focused organization energized and engaged by the purposeful work we undertake. For more than 60 years, we’ve restored sight for thousands of people. We have a clear vision, the expertise and strategies in place to change even more lives in 2020 and into the future.
Our values guide us every day, in every way. Our leadership and staff are committed.
We believe you are, too. Join us in creating a world without blindness.
As part of the Eversight community, #YouChangeLives.