An Exeter opticians is collecting old and unused glasses in aid of Vision Aid Overseas (VAO).

Record number

Specsavers in town are asking locals to search high and low for old pairs of specs as staff aim to collect a record number of glasses for the UK-based charity.

Store director Lillian-Evangelia Agelis said: ‘We have always had a donation bin taking pride of place in store for collections and we aim to carry on as it is such a good cause. We have invited local business owners, sportspeople, community groups and council members to come down and donate their old specs too.

‘At the end of the day the collected specs are boxed and donated to VAO for recycling. The charity uses the money it makes from selling the reusable materials to fund its work in developing countries.’


Victoria Cox, international programme officer for VAO said: ‘We look forward to seeing how many pairs of glasses the people of Exeter can donate. It’s such a worthwhile cause as this is not only preventing specs from ending up in landfills but also raising vital funds for our overseas programmes’.

VAO works in Africa to transform access to eyecare services and is part of the Vision 2020 initiative to eliminate avoidable blindness by 2020. Since 2003 Specsavers stores have collected and recycled more than a quarter of a million glasses for the charity, and have raised over £550,000. This money has helped a number of projects including solely funding an eyecare clinic in the Zambian capital Lusaka, which was officially opened by Specsavers founder Dame Mary Perkins.

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