Noor Dubai Foundation and The Carter Center Renew Partnership to Eliminate Trachoma, Leading Infectious Cause of Blindness

(In Arabic)

Dubai, United Arab Emirates, June 14, 2021As part of its continued focus on the global fight against neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), the Noor Dubai Foundation renews its partnership with The Carter Center to wipe out trachoma, the leading infectious cause of blindness. Since 2013, the two organizations have assisted Ethiopia in the elimination of trachoma as a public health problem in 29% of the Amhara region, known to be the most trachoma-endemic location in the world.

Dr. Manal Taryam, board member and CEO of the Noor Dubai Foundation stated, “In these modern times, no one should suffer from trachoma, an excruciating yet entirely preventable disease. Noor Dubai is proud to continue its partnership with The Carter Center, Ethiopia Ministry of Health and the Amhara Regional Health Bureau and remains committed to empowering the communities to wipe out this ancient disease from the Amhara region.”

Trachoma is responsible for the visual impairment of an estimated 1.9 million people, of whom 1.2 million are irreversibly blind, with 136.9 million people worldwide living in trachoma-endemic districts. Trachoma can destroy the economic well-being of entire communities, keeping affected families trapped in poverty as the disease passes from one generation to the next.

Noor Dubai’s newest four-year commitment will contribute to the implementation of annual mass drug administration (MDA) in Amhara, which has safely resumed outreach after the COVID-19 pandemic briefly suspended most global health interventions in 2020. Over the next four years, the Noor Dubai-Carter Center collaboration aims to deliver 43 million doses of the antibiotic Zithromax® (donated by Pfizer), projected to impact approximately 14.3 million people. This will contribute to Amhara’s effort to implement the World Health Organization-endorsed SAFE strategy: Surgery, Antibiotics, Facial cleanliness, and Environmental improvement. Additionally, the partnership is slated to carry out prevalence surveys to assess impact and support training sessions for more than 74,000 local health workers by 2025.

Paige Alexander, CEO of The Carter Center, said: “The elimination of trachoma as a public health problem in Amhara is difficult work that will not be completed quickly, and we are so grateful to have Noor Dubai’s commitment to stay by our side on this long road. We will reach the goal of elimination together, and when we do, we will celebrate together.”

The Carter Center began scaling up program activities in the region in 2003 in response to the enormity of the trachoma problem in the region. The newest chapter of the Noor Dubai-Carter Center partnership builds on a collaboration that launched in 2013. Together with the Ethiopia Ministry of Health, Amhara Regional Health Bureau, many other collaborating partners, and thousands upon thousands of frontline health workers, the Noor Dubai Foundation support has contributed to:

  • The elimination of trachoma as a public health problem in 29% of the Amhara region.
  • The delivery of 87 million doses of Pfizer-donated Zithromax®.
  • The completion of eyelid surgery for about 356,620 people to prevent irreversible blindness.
  • The trachoma training and capacity development of
    • 49,816 health workers,
    • 37,032 teachers, and
    • 7,209 surgeons and supervisors.

Noor Dubai-Carter Center Partnership

The ongoing Noor Dubai-Carter Center partnership represents a part of the UAE’s larger, decades-long commitment toward global health and overcoming some of the world’s most deadly and debilitating diseases, including malaria, polio and NTDs. For more than 30 years, the UAE-Carter Center partnership has made measurable impact to improve lives and eliminate diseases that affect the world’s most vulnerable communities.

As a member of Neglected Tropical Disease NGO Network (NNN) and the International Coalition for Trachoma Control (ICTC), Noor Dubai Foundation plays a role in the decision-making process regarding policies, strategy, funding, and advocacy on NTDs, which afflict over 1 billion individuals around the world. Noor Dubai’s mission is to contribute to the improvement of the well-being and the socioeconomic status of people through sustainable control of major causes of avoidable vision loss in collaboration with partners.

Guided by the vision and passion of founders Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter, The Carter Center is a globally recognized pioneer in the effort to eradicate, eliminate, and better control of five NTDs in more than a dozen countries. The Center assists in the implementation activities associated with each disease as well as operational research and impact monitoring and evaluation. The Center provides technical assistance to a wide array of organizations and coalitions, including the WHO, the NNN, and as chair of the ICTC.

The Center has proudly collaborated with the Noor Dubai Foundation since 2013 and the government of Ethiopia since 1991. Over the last eight years, the foundation has invested $2.8 million with The Carter Center to wipe out trachoma in Amhara. 


نور دبي تجدد شراكتها مع مركز كارتر للقضاء على مرض تراخوما


Noor Dubai Foundation, Dubai: Noora Elkouka,
The Carter Center, Atlanta: Emily Staub,

About Noor Dubai Foundation

Noor Dubai Foundation is a UAE based charity focused on the prevention of blindness and visual impairment globally. Launched as an initiative in 2008 by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice president and Prime Minister of the UAE and the ruler of Dubai, it was later established as an NGO by Law in October 2010. Millions of individuals in over 20 countries across Africa and Asia have benefited from the free treatment and preventive programs conducted by Noor Dubai Foundation, which include provision of surgeries, eyeglasses, and medication. As member of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness and the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives foundation, Noor Dubai continues to strive towards fulfilling the Vision 2020 initiative of a world free from preventable forms of blindness.


About The Carter Center

"Waging Peace. Fighting Disease. Building Hope."

A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in over 80 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; and improving mental health care. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide.