Opticians in Ilkley and Otley are urging local people to donate their old, unwanted glasses to their New Year appeal, which aims to improve the eye health of those less fortunate in the developing world.
Ilkley and Otley Specsavers collected over 1100 pairs of glasses for Vision Aid Overseas in 2014 and will continue to collect frames over the coming year. Customers can get involved in the appeal by dropping their old frames into the in-store collection bins, which will then be donated to Vision Aid Overseas.
Improving eyecare provision in the developing world
The glasses are recycled and the money raised is used to fund the charity’s work in developing countries. This includes giving people much needed eye tests and treatment, and training up local optometrists. With the help of Specsavers, the international charity is committed to providing eyecare for people living in Zambia. Previously, there had been very limited provision for the one in four Zambians who desperately require it, with just a handful of qualified optometrists serving the 12million population.
A word from the director
Roger Copley, store director at Otley and Ilkley Specsavers, commented: ‘In Britain we are used to having access to excellent eyecare on our high streets but most people in Zambia are not as lucky so it’s important we do what we can to improve eye health there.
‘There must be thousands of spare specs lying around in drawers around the country that are no longer of use to their owners. All donations are welcome.’
A decade of partnership
Specsavers has worked closely with Vision Aid Overseas for the last decade and is continuing to do so. In this time, the opticians has raised more than £800,000 and has collected in excess of 250,000 pairs of glasses. The money has been put to good use by funding the construction of a school for optometry in Zambia’s capital, Lusaka, and nine vision centres across the country.