Author: Grecia Greco

RestoringVision Reaches 5 Million Milestone in Distribution of Readers and Sunglasses

In Partnership With More Than 1,400 Humanitarian Groups in Over 115 Countries, RestoringVision Changes Lives.DSCF0669

(SAN RAFAEL, Calif.—April 11, 2016) RestoringVision today announced it has distributed 5 million pairs of reading glasses and sunglasses in developing countries, an astounding milestone reached in the organization’s short 13-ˇyear history, with more than half of distribution occurring in just the past two years. Partnering with more than 1,400 humanitarian groups in more than 115 countries, the organization’s mission is to give “the gift of sight” to people who would otherwise lack access or resources.

“We provide new, high quality, affordable readers and sunglasses for medical, vision, faith-based, and general philanthropic groups,” said Mark Sachs, Founder of RestoringVision. “There has been a paradigm shift in how we work that’s increasing our outreach. Short-term mission trips have been our base. But we’ve recently moved to supplying permanent clinics, resulting in astounding growth. From 2014 to 2015, we increased distribution from 500,000 to 2.5 million.”

RestoringVision works directly with permanent clinics and global health organizations operating in Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, Haiti, Ukraine, Peru, South Sudan, Uganda and more. The organization has also partnered with several large humanitarian organizations including Food For The Poor, Catholic Medical Mission Board, AmeriCares, Mission to the World, VOSH and the Dikembe Mutombo Foundation.

“This year has set us up for having a much greater impact around the world. We’re tapping into the worldwide need for these glasses. We are working with more groups and on a larger scale. It’s really gaining momentum,” said Pelin Munis, Executive Director of RestoringVision. “Providing glasses and sunglasses is an easy, inexpensive, and rewarding way for humanitarian groups to dramatically change lives.”

Cash gifts, sponsorships, and donations of excess inventory of new readers and sunglasses from a variety of eyewear companies make this effort possible.

“We are extremely grateful for the support of all our partners, including FGX International, National Vision Inc. (through its America’s Best Contacts & Eyeglasses brand) and Walmart,” said Sachs. “Additionally, EyeCare Partners, including Clarkson Eyecare, EyeCare Associates, eyecarecenter, and Thoma & Sutton Eye Care as well as Jimmy Fairly (France), Solo Eyewear and Jonas Paul Eyewear have provided “Buy One Give One” support programs,” Sachs added.

According to the World Health Organization, eyeglasses can correct 80 percent of vision impairment. Reading glasses in particular make a significant difference for people with presbyopia (commonly called farsightedness), which usually begins around age 40. Over 500 million people in the developing world have uncorrected presbyopia.

RestoringVision works to change the lives of those unable to read, maintain a job, or remain a productive member of their community because they can’t focus close up and lack access to a simple tool: Reading glasses. Sunglasses are an important tool in preventing cataracts which develop from excessive exposure to UV light.

Stories of Hope from Around the Globe: Episode 2

Great news! This week we launched the second episode of the video series, “Stories of Hope from Around the Globe.” In this episode, we feature the work of New Orleans Medical Mission Services (NOMMS), a non-profit dedicated to providing free medical treatment, consultation, education, equipment and supplies to people in need in developing countries. To watch the video, click on the link below.

In this episode Dana Atchison, Director of the Eye Clinic Program, shares the experiences that she and her team had while dispensing glasses on their last trip to Matagalpa, Nicaragua. Dana describes the excitement and joy that the volunteers feel when helping people in need and notes how remarkable it is to do so much for people with so little effort.

Like and share this video!

Happy International Women’s Day!

03.08.2016

Today is the International Women’s Day (IWD)! On this day we celebrate women and their social, economic, cultural and political achievements around the world. This year, the IWD campaign theme is ‪#‎PledgeForParity‬. According to the World Economic Forum, it would take until the year of 2133 to achieve global gender parity.

At RestoringVision, we believe that access to vision correction plays an important role in gender parity. Women with near vision impairment that have access to vision correction can improve their lives by:

-Being able to read = improving/continuing their education.
-Being able to work = becoming financially independent and providing for their families.
-Being able to become fully productive = participating in the daily well-being of their communities.

With a clear vision women can fulfill their potential and contribute their best to society.

New Video Series: Stories of Hope from Around the Globe

We have exiting news! Today we are launching the first episode of a new video series called “Stories of Hope from Around the Globe.” The goal of this series is to raise awareness about the need for and impact that reading glasses and sunglasses have on people’s lives by featuring the work of our partners.

We begin the series with Episode 1: “A Rewarding Experience” featuring Helping Haitians in Need, a non-profit dedicated to providing help to Puit Chacha, a small rural area in Haiti. In this episode Paul Hubert, Founder of Helping Haitians in Need, shares his experience dispensing reading glasses and sunglasses in an extremely underserved area. Paul describes how reading glasses and sunglasses impact people’s lives, and how easy and rewarding it is to give the Gift of Sight.

Like the video on YouTube and share it on your social media so that more people can learn about how reading glasses and sunglasses positively change the lives!

THANK YOU for a Great Year!

 
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A Message from the Founder

Dear Partners and Friends,

Welcome to 2016!

Looking back, 2015 was an amazing year for us. We shipped nearly 2.5M glasses and exceeded 5M glasses since we began in 2003. To date we have worked with over 1400 organizations that have provided glasses to people in 115 countries around the globe. Of course, the numbers are only significant in what they represent. Literally millions of people around the world who can keep doing what they love or what they must. And we couldn’t have done it without you. Many thanks to our partners in the 4th Quarter of 2015. And thanks to all of you for your help in letting us continue to do what we do.

Warm wishes,

Mark Sachs, Founder, RestoringVision.org