Over 6,000 eye exams | Over 300 surgeries | 10,000's of meals served | 150+ doctors trained in first aid or specialized eyecare | 1000's of eyeglasses distributed
IT STARTED WITH A FAMILY TRIP...
In 2014 our children asked if we could do a "volunteer trip" instead of our usual family vacation. We took their idea to heart, and that summer flew with our four kids to volunteer at the Mother Theresa orphanage in Addis Ababa, and in the Jewish community of Gondar. What we saw and experienced changed our lives. Severely malnourished children, no medical care, and unimaginable poverty. On our last day in Gondar where we ran camp-like activities for the kids, the locals heard that Morris was an Eye Doctor, and hundreds lined up to have their eyes checked. He had no equipment, but examined every last person with a pen light, doing the best he could. We returned home deeply affected by our experience, and decided to do something about it. We went back the following summer - this time with medical equipment, and eye medications and eyeglasses that we purchased ourselves, and set up our first mobile eye-clinic in the Gondar Jewish compound. We’ve returned over a dozen times since and expanded our efforts to include doctor training in Israel, a feeding program co-run with SSEJ, surgeries, and more. Elisa eventually closed-down her ecommerce business of 2+ decades to devote her energies to creating a non-profit organization to expand our efforts, and “Operation Ethiopia” was born. We never imagined all that could come from one family vacation. We invite you to read more about our work and support our efforts.
- Dr. Morris Hartstein MD, FACS, and Elisa Minsk Hartstein
LEARN WHAT WE ARE DOING IN AFRICA AND SEE HOW YOU CAN HELP
FEEDING PROGRAM FOR MALNOURISHED CHILDREN
Providing two stable meals a day to 500 children aged 0-5, and nursing mothers in Gondar.
ON-SITE EYECARE CLINICS IN THE VILLAGES
Setting up on-site mobile eye clinics in Gondar and surrounding villages to treat patients.
DOCTOR TRAINING IN ISRAEL
Bringing Ethiopian doctors to Israel for advanced training. 15 Ethiopian doctors have now completed ophthalmic training in Israel.
FIRST-AID AND CPR TRAINING IN GONDAR
Training youth in First Aid, CPR, and Covid preventive care, and doctors in CPR.
DR. MORRIS HARTSTEIN, MD, FACS
Operation Ethiopia was founded by Dr. Morris Hartstein MD, FACS, who specializes in Ophthalmic Plastic, Reconstructive, and Cosmetic Surgery. He trained at Harvard, Tufts, and NYU, and is currently the Director of Oculoplastic Surgery at Shamir Medical Center in Zrifin, Israel and a Clinical Associate Professor at Tel Aviv University Medical School. He has made over 10 trips to Ethiopia, all at his own expense, to treat and operate on those who otherwise have little or no access to care. He brings Ethiopian doctors to Israel to train in his hospital, and has personally trained three of the five Oculoplastic surgeons in all of Ethiopia. Prior to moving to Israel in 2004, he was Associate Professor of Ophthalmology and Plastic Surgery at Saint Louis University. He has published four texbooks on ophthalmic surgery, given hundreds of lectures, and trained seven fellows. He is a husband and father of four, and Operation Ethiopia continues to be a family effort.
CONTACT OPERATION ETHIOPIA
Get in touch with Operation Ethiopia to learn more about our work, partner with us, and find out how you can get involved.
Please fill out the contact form below. We look forward to hearing from you.