To mark National Children’s Eye Health month (24 October – 23 November) staff at Specsavers in Greenock donned their best polka dots to raise money for the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB).

Wear Dots, Raise Lots

The Wear Dots, To Raise Lots initiative is a national fundraising campaign designed to increase awareness around the importance of good eye care among children. It comes after research from Specsavers and the Royal National Institute of Blind People revealed around 20 per cent of school children still have an undiagnosed vision problem - despite eye tests being free with an NHS voucher.

The State of the Nation’s Eye Health report also showed that 27 per cent of parents with children aged three to 16 said their children had never had an eye test.

Vital role in development

Lesley Brown, store director at Specsavers in Greenock, said: ‘Good eye health plays such an important role in a child’s overall development - be it enhancing their language and cognitive skills, to improving their social abilities when interacting with others. Therefore, it is shocking to learn that such a significant number of parents are leaving it so late before taking their child for an eye test.

‘The detection of common sight problems amongst children, such as a lazy eye, squint or short sightedness, can be easily corrected provided they are spotted early enough - ideally before a child turns eight. However many parents are clearly still in the dark about how to protect their child’s vision.

‘The Wear Dots, To Raise Lots initiative is a great way to get the message out there and hopefully encourage more parents to take advantage of the free sight tests available to their children.’

To promote the highest standards of clinical testing for children, Specsavers has introduced a pediatric eyecare BTEC level 6 qualification. There are currently 1,164 optometrists, contact lens opticians and dispensing opticians enrolled on the course and Specsavers has waived all course fees to encourage more take up.

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