The team in Hinckley are encouraging locals to donate their old and unwanted specs so that they can be used on their forthcoming volunteer eye charity mission to Ghana, performing free eye tests and donating the second hand spectacles to the local Ghanaians in October.
The teams has already had hundreds of pairs of specs donated by customers, and are busy processing them in store. This includes checking the prescriptions, writing a label for each, cleaning, bagging and tagging them ready for the trip.
Abhijit Roy, director at the Hinckley store and the Ashanti Development’s UK Eye Health Ambassador, has visited the clinic in Gyetiase several times and will be returning with fellow Specsavers directors Nigel Davidson, Claire Fletcher, Baljit Kaur and locum optometrist Ahmed Daya in October this year.
He explains how the donated specs help: ‘We’re going back to the Ashanti to help the community there access proper eyecare. We’ve been collecting specs from Hinckley locals for years, and each time we appeal for donations, the response is overwhelming. It’s a real community effort which makes such a difference, and each time we are able to dispense thousands of the glasses we collect.
‘We really appreciate those who have already helped through donations and giving their old specs to us, they’ve made a world of difference and the project has come on leaps and bounds because of them – we now have a part-time Ghanaian optometrist working in the eye clinic. There are only 45 optometrists in Ghana compared to around 12,000 in the UK, so every little bit makes a huge difference.’
The store has been actively supporting the clinic in Gyetiase, an initiative of the Ashanti Development charity, continuously for five years. They have visited, donated equipment, fundraised and undertaken staff training in store.
The Ashanti Development, which is run solely by volunteers, continuously works to provide remote Ashanti villages with water and sanitation, healthcare, education and income generating activities. For more information, please visit www.ashanti-development.org/.