The stories of those behind the Trust’s impact across the Commonwealth told through new book A Lasting Legacy

The stories of those behind the Trust’s impact across the Commonwealth told through new book A Lasting Legacy

The Trust has today released a book which tells the unique stories of those whose lives have changed as a result of the Trust’s programmes. 

Established as a time-limited charitable foundation by Commonwealth Heads of Government in 2012 to mark The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the Trust has delivered a series of five-year programmes aimed at enriching the lives of people in every country of the Commonwealth.

To mark its impact across the Commonwealth in its efforts to eliminate avoidable blindness and empower a new generation of young leaders, the Trust has published a book entitled A Lasting Legacy to celebrate the achievements made in honour of Her Majesty The Queen. 

A Lasting Legacy tells the stories of 62 individuals from 54 countries whose lives have changed as a result of the Trust. 

Writing in the publication, Our Vice Patron Her Royal Highness The Countess of Wessex said:

This book, through stories, paints a picture of what the Trust, with the support of its exceptional partners, has been able to achieve.

Stories include those of Safira Mwale, a 14-year old schoolgirl who was selected as a trachoma champion by her school and teaches her community about the dangers of trachoma and how they can prevent it. Five years ago, eight million people in Malawi were at risk of trachoma. Today, thanks to the coordinated efforts of the Ministry of Health and partners supported by the Trust, Malawi is now on track to be validated by the World Health Organization as having officially eliminated blinding trachoma. “I feel happy about Malawi being in the new phase because this disease is dangerous” Safira says.

Queen’s Young Leaders across the four cohorts of the programme also feature, including Heidy Quah who is committed to championing refugee issues in Malaysia. She is the founder and director of Refuge for the Refugees, a non-profit organisation which seeks to raise awareness of the status of refugees in the country, and provides education for refugee children. Heidy said: “The Queen’s Young Leaders Award works very much as a launch pad. Young people have a voice and a vital role to play. The fate of the next generation lies in our hands.”

The work of the Trust, through its affiliation with The Queen, the support offered by Commonwealth Governments and the tireless work of partners, has succeeded in effecting change across the globe. Showing how the Trust’s legacy will continue, Dr Abba Hydara, a senior consultant ophthalmologist from The Gambia said: “My ambition is to inspire younger Gambians to continue the task of fighting avoidable blindness. I want to leave a legacy that champions blindness prevention.” 

The Trust will close as planned in 2020, with its mission living on in each and every person it has had the privilege to help and through those it has equipped to continue changing lives for years to come.

A copy of A Lasting Legacy can be downloaded here.