Eye Care Observances

Promote the importance of eye and vision care by participating in some or all of the observances listed below!
Date in 2021 Observances
January National Glaucoma Awareness Month
January 4 World Braille Day
January 24 International Day of Education
February 4 World Cancer Day
February 11 International Day of Women and Girls In Science
February AMD/Low Vision Awareness Month
March US Workplace Eye Wellness Month
March 8 International Women's Day
March 8-14 World Glaucoma Week
March 21 World Down Syndrome Day
March 23 World Optometry Day
March 26-30 World Optometry Week
April US Women's Eye Health and Safety Month
April 2 World Autism Awareness Day
April 7 World Health Day
April 19-25 US National Volunteer Week
April 28 World Day for Safety and Health at Work
May Healthy Vision Month
May US Ultraviolet Awareness Month
May 5 Save Lives: Clean Your Hands
May 12 International Day of the Nurse
May 12-18 National Women's Health Week
May 21 World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development
May 31 World No Tobacco Day
June US Cataract Awareness Month
June 20 World Refugee Day
June-July US Fireworks Safety Month
August US Children's Eye Health and Safety Month
August 12 International Youth Day
August 19 World Humanitarian Day
August 20-24 Contact Lens Health Week
September US Sports Eye Safety Month
September 5 International Day of Charity
September 8 International Literacy Day
September 12 International Day for South-South Cooperation Day
October US Contact Lens Safety Month
October 1 International Day of Older Persons
October 10 World Mental Health Day
October 14 (always the 2nd Thursday of October) World Sight Day
October 15 International Day of Rural Women
October 17 International Day for the Eradication of Poverty
November US Diabetes-Related Eye Disease Month
November 14 World Diabetes Day
November 15 World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims
November 20 World Children's Day
December US Safe Toys and Gifts Month
December 3 International Day of Persons with Disabilities
December 5 International Volunteer Day
December 12 International Universal Health Coverage Day

Please note this list is not necessarily exhaustive, but provides an abbreviated list of those in alignment with VOSH outreach and positions. If you would like to add an observance or need more information, please contact us.

Updated COVID-19 and VOSH Humanitarian Clinics Advice

VOSH/International recently consulted its US and International Chapters about the feasibility and timing to restart our humanitarian clinics. While the vaccination process continues with different levels of success depending on availability and acceptance, it is evident that vaccine inequity and the availability and reliability of data in several countries are issues we need to consider.

Even if already vaccinated and boosted, our chapters are still concerned about the wellbeing of our volunteers and patients.  Some chapters, are organizing clinics locally where they are better able to comply with the existing safety requirements and respective state/country regulations.

The COVID-19 pandemic and its variants are being experienced quite differently depending on state, region, country, vaccine availability, vaccine acceptance, and the spread of SARS-COV-2 variants. Most VOSH chapters are not holding clinics or traveling internationally in 2021 or 2022.

If a VOSH Chapter choses to hold a clinic or travel internationally, we highly recommend that the chapter performs due diligence to comply fully with the requirements established by the visited country, ensures all VOSH volunteers are aware of and follow strict safety guidelines and all existing protocols and regulations of the country, and keeps the principle of “do no harm” embedded in all its decision making. As always, the wellbeing and safety for VOSH volunteers and our patients is of utmost importance and central to any decision-making process. We have published our updated clinic guidelines with best practices to be observed in this new context. VOSH chapters in specific countries are using protocols that need to be considered as well. You can download VOSH/International clinic guidelines here.

*VOSH/International is formed by autonomous US and international chapters that are fully and only responsible for their activities, fundraising and decision-making.  VOSH/International can only provide recommendations based on our best knowledge and information at the time.

Also please keep checking the following sites with official and most recent updates:

World Health Organization: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

US CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/when-to-delay-travel.html

US Government Travel Advise: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/COVID-19-Country-Specific-Information.html

Thank you for your hard work and dedication to improving vision and eye health throughout the world.

Michael Ciszek, OD, dipl ABO, FVI

President, VOSH/International

December 2021