Letter from the Executive Director – Spring 2022

“Those who experienced the founders’ period know how close to the heart of Seva the delicate dance between spirit and form is, between inner and outer. Seva was at its strongest when these dualities worked together with respect and in dynamic balance. It was also true that Seva took the longest strides and generated the most satisfying fellowship when actions were firmly rooted in the conscious effort to be of service to others. 

Service and spirit are the heart of the Seva vision. These notions did not originate with Seva, nor has Seva any copyright on either of them, but in explorations that took place over many years, through many meetings and in diverse projects around the world, by heated argument and in loving story, a distinctive rendering of the vision of service and spirit took form at the very heart of this organization. Honoring in notion and in practice the core of its founding vision – even as it may adopt conventional forms of management – is how Seva can continue to be an inspiring source of this needed wisdom and a vehicle to carry it into the future.

Then the unique and potent spirit that has animated Seva from its founding will continue to be vital and will find new ways to be expressed within this evolving organization.”

– The Spirit of Service written by Alan Morinis
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Pat Haley: Celebrating the power of our remarkable Seva community!

Our Seva family continues to grow by the day, reaching every corner of the world. We recently heard from one inspiring supporter, Pat Haley, about his connection to our mission and why he chooses to support Seva – we had to share his uplifting message with you!

Pat has a remarkable career helping children living with special needs as a teacher, school administrator, project director, and grant writer. A few years ago, things changed. His vision began to deteriorate, and he required cataract surgery to restore his sight. 

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New Vision Centers Established = More Sight Restored 

A Vision Center is a permanent, local establishment equipped to meet 80% of all eye care needs. Set up in primarily remote communities, they are a beacon of light for those with limited access to vision care. These centers support the local economy, often expanding job opportunities for women and underserved populations. 

We are thrilled to share that 33 new Vision Centers were inaugurated across Bangladesh and India in the past few months. 

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Seva wins major accolades for sight-restoration efforts!

Esteemed former NY Times journalist Nicholas Kristof named Seva the Grand Prize recipient of the Holiday Impact Prize.

Seva closed 2021 in a big way! Two-time Pulitzer Prize winner and former New York Times journalist Nicholas Kristof named Seva his Holiday Impact Grand Prize Winner. This award honors non-profit organizations that are changing the world with bold ideas. Here’s what Kristof said about Seva:

“It feels miraculous to watch people regain their sight, but it’s a miracle that we can all make happen. Seva Foundation, the Grand Prize Winner of this year’s Holiday Impact Prize, is transforming people’s lives for as little as $50 per cataract surgery. Seva works in more than 20 countries abroad and in Native American communities in the United States, and nothing is more joyous than seeing the impact of its work on people who had thought they would never see again.” 

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LOVE, MUSIC AND LIGHT:  Our Sing Out For Seva Quarantine Concert was a hit!

Joan Baez, Wavy Gravy, and Steve Earle.

Over Valentine’s Day weekend, Seva supporters spread the love in the most memorable way possible – through music, fun, and festivities! 

From February 11-14, we held our popular Sing Out For Seva Quarantine Concert – A Valentine’s Special, featuring never before seen archival footage from past benefit concerts. Viewers tuned in from all over the world and sang along to Crosby & Nash, Joan Baez & David Grisman, Jason Mraz, Los Lobos, Bob Weir & Steve Kimock, and many more star-studded performances. The one and only Wavy Gravy hosted the concert and also featured special guests Rising Appalachia, Elvin Bishop, and Dumpstaphunk.

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Meet Parmila – known as the “selfless mother” – transforming the lives of women in Nepal


Parmila, as the selfless mother, travels to the island of Sri Lanka in Nepal by boat to provide health and eye care services to women in need with our Youth Outreach Team.

Parmila is from Sri Lanka, a small island located in the middle of a mighty river called Koshi and one of the remotest settlements in eastern Nepal. It can only be reached by boat, as pictured above, and is inhabited by people living with financial means. 

When our Youth Outreach Team visited the island, they learned that there were many cataract patients, but only the men had been prioritized to receive care. The women were confined to household chores, and their eyesight was thought to be less important. Sadly, these women believed  that this was their fate – to live in darkness forever. 

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Marking 10+ years of impact for children in India with Soor Aur Saptak


Soor Aur Saptak’s theme this year was “Your Melody Matches Mine” – a night filled with endless music, dance, and joy – all to raise funds for Seva’s pediatric eye care programs in India.

In late February, Indian-American singing group Soor Aur Saptak (SAS) held its eleventh annual musical benefit in Portland, Oregon. The theme of this year’s benefit was “Your melody matches mine,” and rightly so. It was a captivating night of Bollywood music, dancing, and singing – all while raising funds to provide eye care for children in India.

Sandhiprakash Bhide, Founder of Soor Aur Saptak, shared, “we cannot believe it has been 11 years since we started this program back in 2012. This would not have been possible without the generous Portland community and now the world community because of our online program.”

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In Service of Bangladesh – This Time Through Sight!

The need for quality access to eye care in Bangladesh is paramount – nearly 3X the population here lives with blindness compared to the United States. Seva has worked in Bangladesh since 2005,  prioritizing increased access to eye care, training of ophthalmic personnel, and focusing on evidence-based solutions with local partners. 

This year, Seva will be establishing seven new Vision Centers across the country, creating access to eye care for an additional 700,000 people. To make this possible, a generous family agreed to match all donations up to $250,000 to raise a total of $500,000 – and we met our campaign goal! If you donated or spread the word about this campaign –  thank you! 

Speaking of Bangladesh, in March, Seva’s Executive Director,  Kate Moynihan, was joined by Nobel Peace Prize Winner Professor Muhammad Yunus for a special edition of Conversations with Kate – In Service of Bangladesh: This Time through Sight. The session focused  on our partnership with Grameen Healthcare and our collaborative eye care efforts in the country.

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Our very own Kuldeep Singh is recognized as an Eye Health Hero!

Kuldeep Singh, Program Manager for India & Bangladesh, is a 2021 Eye Health Heroes – Future Leaders recipient!

Seva’s very own Kuldeep Singh, Program Manager for India & Bangladesh, was named an Eye Health Hero by the International Agency for Prevention of Blindness. This recognition celebrates change-makers, innovators, and leaders across all areas and backgrounds in eye health. 

Early on, Kuldeep recognized that investing in eye care improves someone’s vision and touches on every other facet of their life. In his words, “eye care is everything!” Congrats to him on this well-deserved achievement!

“Restoring sight touches all parts of life – health, job secrurity, dignity, and opportunity. It impacts not just one person but entire families and communities. Investing in eye care is one of the most impactful development interventions and I am grateful to be part of such an incredible organization dedicated to this important mission.”

– Kuldeep Singh