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Leela V Raju, MD


Title: Tragedy of Childhood Blindness

















                   Dr. Leela V. Raju is in private practice at Eye Physicians and Surgeons in Brooklyn, NY. She is also a clinical instructor at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mt. Sinai. 

                  After graduating from Brown University with a degree in Biology with Honors, she received her MD degree at Marshall University.  She completed an Ocular Pathology Fellowship at Johns Hopkins University and Ophthalmology residency at the University of Pittsburgh.  She completed a Cornea, Anterior Segment and External Disease Fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine. Before moving to New York, she was an Assistant Clinical Professor and Vice Chair of clinical operations in the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Pittsburgh. 

Her clinical interests include DSEK surgery, ocular surface reconstruction, complicated cataract surgery and anterior segment reconstruction.  Dr. Raju has a strong interest in international ophthalmology and is part of the non-profit Eye Foundation of America improving eye care around the world and makes a yearly trip to India to visit Goutami Eye Institute in Rajahmundry, AP to see patients, perform surgery and teach. 

About the Foundation:

            The Eye Foundation of America has been improving the accessibility and the affordability of eye care in India and over 21 other countries since 1977. Dr. VK Raju founded EFA in West Virginia to support the work of “eye camps” in India. Since then, EFA has helped with the construction and supported 2 hospitals in Andhra Pradesh and supported children’s school screenings in India and other countries including Ghana. One of the eye hospitals we support, Goutami, has trained over 60 ophthalmologists from developing countries who go back to their countries - China, Vietnam, Afghanistan, and others - to teach the techniques they have learned, and performed over 100,000 surgeries. Over many years we have learned preventing vision problems before they become irreversible and blindness-causing was of utmost importance. We are now focusing a significant portion of our resources on public health issues that lead to vision loss such as diabetic retinopathy and lack of glasses in childhood leading to amblyopia (lazy eye). These types of efforts are both cost efficient and easier to do on a larger scale since they do not focus only on tertiary care. We will continue to focus on providing excellent surgical care when needed and teaching surgeons techniques to improve the quality of eye surgery around the world


Tapping Philanthropic and other Organizations for Financing to Do Community Service Projects and Providing Collaboration"

Although many nonprofit and service organizations have the zeal and commitment to do community service projects, they constantly look for finances to do the projects on a sustainable basis.  They compete for grants from philanthropic organizations and individual donors.   Also, they frequently try to create synergy to do the projects by working with volunteers and collaborating with other organizations.

The Panel Discussion is organized with a view to assemble experts, who have the knowledge and experience in the field of philanthropy.  Attendees of this panel discussion will hopefully learn from the panelists, who are experts in the field of philanthropy.  The Community Service Committee expects to have a highly interactive discussion between the attendees and the panelists of this session and is hopeful that the attendees will benefit immensely in implementing sustainable projects.





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