AWB Archived Programs

Program Goals

  • Crowdsource solar observing glasses to schools throughout Africa for the solar eclipse
  • Provide opportunities for students to observe this rare natural phenomenon
  • Provide opportunities for schools in Africa to introduce science through this rare spectacle

About Eclipse Glasses Donations for Africa

The campaign to help schools in Africa during the 2013 eclipse, described below, was a great success. Astronomers Without Borders will be doing it again but even bigger for upcoming eclipses in developing countries.

If you'd like to contribute to Astronomers Without Borders' worldwide astronomy programs you can still use the Donate button below. The eclipse is over but the need for support continues!


On 3 November a total solar eclipse will cross the African continent. This is a rare opportunity to expose students to science in a region where science resources are often non-existent.

 awbeclipseviewers MED

An Astronomers Without Borders program will provide eclipse viewing glasses free to schools that will experience a total eclipse or a very deep partial eclipse for use by thousands of students.

Update: 13,700 pairs of eclipse glasses have been shipped to schools in Africa. Donations are very much appreciated to cover extra glasses that were shipped (see below) and shipping costs.

Schools have been identified and vetted by partner organizations in each country, and distribution networks have been verified. Every donated pair of eclipse glasses WILL reach a student for use for the eclipse. The International Astronomical Union's Office of Astronomy for Development, which is based in Cape Town, South Africa, is providing invaluable support and assistance through their many contacts across Africa.

This program is made possible by donations.
Donate $1 per pair of glasses, in any amount.

Donations are made through PayPal. You do NOT need a PayPal account to donate through PayPal. If you prefer another method you can donate through our online store.

You can also purchase eclipse glasses for your own use.

13,700 glasses have been shipped to Africa! Thanks to everyone who has contributed.
Schools in the following countries are receiving glasses from the AWB donation program.
You can still donate to cover the surplus of glasses shipped and the cost of shipping.

In the path of the total eclipse:
Gabon (500)
Nigeria (500)
Kenya (5200)

Close to totality (partial eclipse):
Sao Tome (500)
Ghana (1500)
Rwanda (300)
Uganda (3200)
Tanzania (2000)


Total Glasses Shipped: 13,700


Total Glasses Donated: 10,528

click map to enlarge

Eclipsemap 250

Eclipse map courtesy Xavier Jubier



Astronomy Camp, an immersion experience operated by the University of Arizona
at Tucson's nearby professional observatories, has donated 1500 glasses!



Rainbow Symphony, manufacturer of AWB's Eclipse Shades™ glasses,
has donated 3200 glasses to be sent to Africa!




Description of eclipse glasses

These high-quality eclipse glasses are branded with the Astronomers Without Borders name, logo and motto, One People, One Sky.

The backside is printed with safety information (English only).

These Eclipse Shades® Safe Solar Glasses are absolutely safe for direct solar viewing of solar eclipses and sunspots. The black polymer lens material is scratch resistant, optical density 5 and CE certified. It filters out 100% of harmful ultra-violet, 100% of harmful infrared, and 99.999% of intense visible light and creates a pleasing orange image of the Sun.

Additional donations to cover the surplus of glasses sent and the cost shipping to Africa and travelers going to Africa are very much appreciated.

Post a Member Report about this Program

Share your activities with others around the world by posting a Member Report for the worldwide astronomy community to see! Your reports help Astronomers Without Borders show sponsors how successful our programs are, too!