Needy people living thousands of miles away will soon be able to see clearly thanks to the support of Specsavers in Hartlepool.

Expat Michael Stalley, who lives in the Phillippines, received about 100 pairs of reading glasses from the Middleton Grange store on his last visit to his hometown.

It is part of work that ex-serviceman Michael and a group of friends have been doing to help those in need for a number of years.

Reading help

Michael says: ‘After leaving the service I worked with the UN in various conflict regions and seen at first hand so many in need.

‘Around eight years ago, a few friends and I set up a charitable group to help those in deprived areas by handing out donations.

‘Each year I visit my hometown of Hartlepool and whilst I am here I collect items to take back to the Philippines with me.

‘Over the past few years, we have been collecting reading glasses with the help of good people in Hartlepool including the Specsavers store.

‘Specsavers donated 80 pairs of reading glasses which are now on their way to London, ready to be shipped to the Philippines.’

The store currently collects old glasses which is given to various good causes including Vision Aid Overseas.

A word from the store director

Ian Walker, store director of Specsavers Hartlepool, says: ‘Not a lot of people are aware but old specs are actually very valuable.

It is much better that they go to someone in need rather than just being binned.

‘We welcome customers to drop off their old frames at the store at any time.’

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