Category: Uncategorized

Jul-Aug Newsletter – Reflecting on 16 Years of Service

Dear Partners and Friends,

Sixteen years ago, RestoringVision was born out of a need and desire to help. One man’s observation. One man’s commitment to do something about it. It was during an outreach trip to Mexico that our Founder and Chairman Mark Sachs saw the tremendous need for reading glasses. He witnessed people traveling 10, 20, even 30 miles, sleeping overnight just to be able to attend the eye clinic when it opened the next morning. These were people living with and suffering from vision impairment, with no access to glasses. More than half of the people, who visited the clinic, simply needed a pair of non-prescription reading glasses – glasses that were readily available in the United States but nearly impossible to find in impoverished communities. Seeing this incredible need, Mark was determined to make a difference.

Mark’s desire to help led to the creation of our unique organization and model. By building a network of glasses manufacturers, charitable organizations, and socially conscious corporations and people, we have been able to restore and protect vision for more than 15 million people in 130 countries. From helping only 2,000 people in our first year in 2003 to helping over 3 million people a year today, we’re very proud of what we have accomplished with you, our partners on this incredible journey! As always, thank YOU for what you do and a big Happy Anniversary to all of us!

Best regards,
Pelin Munis, Ph.D.
Executive Director, RestoringVision


LOOKING TOWARD YEAR-END

RestoringVision Celebrates our 16-Year Anniversary

On October 2, RestoringVision turns 16. Since our inception, we’ve transformed more than 15 million lives through the gift of sight. We are proud to have become the largest provider of new glasses to people living in impoverished communities and are fiercely committed to doing good with integrity. Your support brought us to this milestone, and we couldn’t be more grateful

This year for the first time, we’re kicking off our year-end giving campaign on our anniversary! We invite you to celebrate all that you’ve made possible and make a bigger commitment to do more this year.

Donors:
Show your support with a charitable contribution.
This year, we have a gap in our fundraising goal and therefore, your donations are more important than ever. Every dollar raised helps provide the gift of sight to a person in need. Your donations can help a mother or father providing for their family, a midwife delivering babies for the community, a farmer who is sorting beans, and so many more individuals who rely on their vision.

Partners:
Order glasses for your upcoming mission trips.
Adding glasses to your outreach projects is an easy, affordable way to transform lives and enhance your programs. With their vision corrected and protected, the people you serve will be able to work, study, care for their families, and so much more. If you don’t have any mission trips coming up, now is the perfect time to donate and refer us to other organizations.


We have even more news and updates to share with you! Please click here for the full version of our newsletter.

 

Join Us in Transforming 20 Million Lives by 2020

Uncorrected near vision impairment due to lack of access to available, affordable glasses in developing countries is one of the biggest global health problems affecting 1 in 7 people. As the largest nonprofit provider of new reading glasses to people living in impoverished communities, RestoringVision has the potential of making a significant difference.

Two years ago, we set an ambitious goal to transform 20 million lives by the end of 2020. Thanks to your support, we have been steadily working toward that milestone ever since. To date, we have helped 15 million people around the world. Although we are closer to achieving our goal, we’re also closer to 2020 and are projecting a shortfall in glasses and donations for the second half of this year. This is why your support is critical now more than ever.

Nowhere can your dollar go further than with RestoringVision. Your donations help inspire and empower people in need around the world. Please consider making an additional donation or increasing your contribution for this year. With your support, we can close the gap and help another five million people restore their vision and their lives by 2020. To change a life, click here.

To learn more about the different ways to get involved with RestoringVision, click here.

Thank you for joining us as we work toward our goal of transforming 20 million lives through the gift of sight.

May-Jun Newsletter – Thank YOU for a Succesful First Half of the Year!

Dear Partners and Friends,

Summer is here and we have much to celebrate! In the first six months of the year, together with you, we’ve restored vision for 1.9 million people! Our partners have traveled to far and remote villages to create access to glasses for those who need them most – as one of our partners says “to some of the poorest people on earth.” Thank YOU for making our collective vision a reality. Together, we are creating a world where more and more people who need glasses have them.

As we celebrate our accomplishments, we also look to our bright future. Every person who is helped, every dollar that is contributed helps us get one step closer to our goal of reaching 20 million people by 2020. As you know, glasses create access to opportunities for employment, education, safety and a better quality of life. Join us in creating these opportunities for more people in need by strengthening your commitment to helping them see and live better. To learn more about how you can help, see below.

As always, thank you for being on this remarkable journey with us to restore vision for millions of people in need.

Best regards,

Pelin Munis, Ph.D.
Executive Director, RestoringVision


2019 AT A GLANCE

With your support, we have helped 1.9 million people see clearly and protect their vision so far this year!

 

 

PROGRAM UPDATES FOR SERVICE DELIVERY PARTNER UPDATE

Thank You for Referring Us!
From January through June 2019, 25% of our orders have come from new partners. The way that these partners heard about us was through referrals. For those of you who referred us, THANK YOU! For those of you who are new, welcome! You are in excellent company with some of the most extraordinary organizations doing good in the world. If you know of someone or an organization that can take glasses to the field, please refer us.

 

DEVELOPMENT UPDATE

Reading Glasses Day Was a Success!
Our inaugural Reading Glasses Day campaign almost $21,000 to create access to glasses for 26,000 people in Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Tanzania. Empowered by the gift of sight, these people will be able to see and live better! Thank you to all of our donors for seeing the opportunity and making a difference in the lives of people in need!

 

 

We have even more news and updates to share with you! Please click here for the full version of our newsletter.

 

Thank You for Making #ReadingGlassesDay a Success!

This year on June 7, RestoringVision and FGX International launched the very first Reading Glasses Day, a commemorative date dedicated to raising awareness about the lack of access to reading glasses in developing countries, and the impact that vision correction through reading glasses has on people’s lives. We’re thrilled to report that, thanks to the help of our Board, #ReadingGlassesDay was a major success!


THANK YOU, ORGANIZATIONS AND COMPANIES!

In total, 15 different organizations got involved and helped us raise awareness, including industry leaders such as Essilor, and optical non-profits like Sightsavers. Additionally, three companies generously donated to our #ReadingGlassesDay campaign: Creator Cakes, Humps Optics, and Neckglasses. Their support and promotion helped us educate thousands of people on the global need for glasses, and inspire them to get involved.


THANK YOU TO OUR DONORS!

Thanks to the generosity of our donors and the RestoringVision Board, we are ecstatic to announce that we surpassed our #ReadingGlassesDay fundraising goal! In total, we raised $20,770 to create access to glasses for 25,963 people in Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Tanzania. Empowered by the gift of sight, these individuals will not only be able to see better – they will be able to live better. With every donation we receive, we are creating lasting change for the people we serve.


THANK YOU TO ALL OF OUR SUPPORTERS for seeing the opportunity with us this #ReadingGlassesDay! We look forward to transforming even more lives with you next year.

Mar-Apr Newsletter – Celebrate Reading Glasses Day with Us!

Dear Partners and Friends,

This is a time of renewed energy and for us at RestoringVision, it’s the perfect moment to launch an exciting new initiative. For the first time ever, RestoringVision together with FGX International is launching Reading Glasses Day on Friday, June 7. This is a commemorative date dedicated to raising awareness about the lack of access to reading glasses in developing countries, and the impact that vision correction through reading glasses has on people’s lives. Whether it’s to read in order to study to become a teacher or a doctor, to be able to see the smile of your child, or to be able to thread a needle in order to work and provide for your family – these are all the beautiful things that reading glasses enable a person to do.

However today, over 500 million people suffer from near vision impairment and its consequences due to a lack of access to reading glasses. They live in impoverished communities where glasses are unavailable and unaffordable. Starting now and concluding on Reading Glasses Day, we will be raising awareness about this problem and need. We encourage you as our partners and supporters to join us in raising awareness and taking action. We’ve created easy and exciting ways for you to get involved and make a difference. See below for more information.

We look forward to celebrating this important day with you, to taking action together and inspiring others to do the same. With clear vision comes significantly better lives. Thank you for being on this exciting and impactful journey with us to restore vision for millions of people in need.

Best regards,

Pelin Munis, Ph.D.
Executive Director, RestoringVision


READING GLASSES DAY: FRIDAY, JUNE 7

Brought to you by RestoringVision and FGX International, Reading Glasses Day is an opportunity to focus attention on the importance of and the global need for reading glasses. And most importantly, it is an opportunity to bring individuals, organizations, and communities together to make a difference.

 

We hope you will #SeeTheOpportunity and join us in celebrating #ReadingGlassesDay.

Click here to read the full newsletter and learn how you can get involved this #ReadingGlassesDay!

The Impact of Access

Imagine for a moment that you’re a teacher who can’t see clearly to grade papers, or an administrator who struggles to see well enough to write reports. All you need is a simple pair of reading glasses, yet there are none available in your village. 

That was the reality for the staff at WISER Girls Secondary School in Kenya.

Rose with her new reading glasses.

Rose, a caterer at the school, said, “For the last five years, I’ve had trouble with seeing.” Without access to affordable reading glasses, Rose was relying on a pair that was several years old and no longer strong enough for her needs. 

When she put on her new reading glasses from RestoringVision, Rose was immediately able to see clearly again. “These will help me do my work better. I shall write better. When I’m budgeting, when writing reports for my department, these will help.” 

All it took for Rose to be more confident and successful in her job was a simple pair of reading glasses. This #ReadingGlassesDay, you can help us create access to glasses for people like Rose across Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Tanzania. Make a donation here today. Thanks to the generosity of our Board of Directors, all donations up to $10,000 will be matched!

To learn more about #ReadingGlassesDay, click here.

Jan-Feb Newsletter – Thanks to YOU, We’re Off to a Great 2019!

Dear Partners and Friends,

RestoringVision is off to a great start this year, thanks to you! We are now in our 3rd year of an ambitious 4-year goal to help 20 million people see clearly by 2020. This year specifically, our goal is to reach 3.2 million people.

In the first two months of the year, 25% of orders for glasses came from new partnerships. This means that more people are learning about this global health problem and taking action to make a difference. Our partners have also shared that by adding glasses, their programs have been enriched.

This year, we have several key initiatives that we set into motion in 2018. These include our work with partner organizations in country, their local governments and ministries to develop programs that provide reading glasses to people living in rural and impoverished communities. These programs are being developed in Bangladesh, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru. We also have been focusing on growing collaborations with US based programs – both large and small and organizations conducting outreach trips. The importance of these programs is their capacity and ability to reach some of the most remote areas of the world.

Partners are at the core of what we do at RestoringVision. We know that we could never solve a global health problem of this scale by ourselves. For that reason, we rely on service delivery partners, donors, and funders to help us advance our mission to transform lives by restoring vision for millions of people in need. Thank you for being on this journey with us and for your support and contributions. We couldn’t do it without you.

Best regards,

Pelin Munis, Ph.D.
Executive Director, RestoringVision



RESTORINGVISION EXECUTIVE OUTREACH TRIP TO GUATEMALA

A RestoringVision volunteer providing reading glasses to a young woman carrying her baby.

Earlier this month, RestoringVision Director of Strategic Partnerships, Mac Humphries, visited Guatemala with two of our institutional donors: FGX International and the Shelter Hill Foundation. Thanks to our service delivery partners, Food For The Poor and Caritas of Guatemala, the group was able to experience first-hand the extraordinary impact that reading glasses have on people living in impoverished communities.

Click here to read the full newsletter and learn more about our trip to Guatemala.

Nov-Dec Newsletter – YOU Made 2018 an Incredible Year!

Dear Partners and Friends,

It’s with warm greetings that I welcome you into the new year and thank you for all that you have made possible in 2018. Last year with your support, we transformed the lives of 3,225,033 people.

As we reflect on these numbers, we remember that it was not that long ago in 2015 that we were at an inflection point at RestoringVision. We made a commitment to grow to help 1 million people in need access glasses and transform their lives through clear vision. That year, our donors and service delivery partners stepped up to the challenge and together, we grew to help 2.5 million people. Since then, we’ve continued to grow and we’re continuing to make a difference in people’s lives every day.

None of this would be possible without your commitment, dedication, and contributions. From our donors, who provide glasses and support our work, to our more than 1,400 service delivery partners, who work with us to get glasses to the people who need them most, I thank you. Simultaneously, I ask you to keep the momentum going. I’m confident that together this year, we can make even greater strides in creating access to glasses for people living in some of the most impoverished communities around the world.

As always, thank you for your partnership and support.

Best regards,

Pelin Munis, Executive Director, RestoringVision


2018 YEAR IN REVIEW

 


NEWS AND UPDATES

 

Clear Vision Collective (CvC)

RestoringVision has partnered with nine optical organizations and the Bangladesh Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for an innovative project titled the Clear Vision Collective (CvC). The goal of this project is to bring the gift of sight to people in need across Bangladesh. We anticipate that over 80% of the individuals we serve will be receiving their first ever pair of glasses through this program. Click here to learn more about this impactful initiative.

 

New Supplemental Reading Glasses Packages

We’re excited to announce that we’re offering two new supplemental reading glasses packages in an effort to better serve our partners who are serving a primarily younger or older population. These packages are the perfect add-on to your standard orders, helping you ensure that you have enough glasses for the specific needs of your trip. Our low strength supplemental package includes 100 pairs of glasses from +1.00 to +2.00 diopters. Our high strength supplemental package includes 100 pairs of glasses from +2.25 to +3.50 diopters. To order the new supplemental packages, click here.

 

 

Popular Reading Glasses Diopters are Back in Stock

Some of our most popular glasses strengths are back in stock. You can once again order reading glasses in the powers +2.25, +3.00, and +3.50. We also have a limited supply of +4.00 reading glasses available to order. Visit our shopping cart to place your 2019 orders today!

 

 

New Ways to Support RestoringVision

We’ve recently updated our website to include two new ways to give to RestoringVision. In addition to one-time and monthly donations, you can now support our mission through Legacy Giving and stock donations. Visit our Donate page to learn more

 

 


To read the full version of our newsletter, please click here.

Announcing Clear Vision Collective

We’re proud to announce that RestoringVision has joined nine eyecare organizations and the Bangladeshi Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to form the Clear Vision Collective. Through this unique partnership, we will help improve access to vision health services across Bangladesh.  

The Clear Vision Collective has established several goals for this project, including making reading glasses available for the very first time to individuals living in rural areas of the country. All this work will be done through Project DRESTI (District Refractive Error and Eye Care Search and Treat Initiative). RestoringVision looks forward to working with BRAC, Essilor, Jeeon, Dr. K. Zaman BNSB Eye Hospital, National Vision, National Eye Care, National Institute of Ophthalmology, OneSight, Orbis, VisionSpring, and the Bangladeshi Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to transform the lives of people in need through the gift of sight.  

To learn more about this impactful initiative, click here.

Deciding Where to Give: Holiday Donations for Nonprofit Organizations

Deciding Where to Give:
Holiday Donations for Nonprofit Organizations

The year-end holiday season is a time for individuals and organizations to reflect upon the past 12 months and celebrate with family and friends. As families gather around the table and organizations host events and parties, this yearly reflection generates an added spark. It inspires many to help people in need around their communities and the world

On top of this, in order to qualify for a tax deduction during the impending tax season, companies and individuals are required to make their yearly charitable contributions prior to the turning of the calendar. As a result, most individual and corporate donations happen between #GivingTuesday, or as we put it here at RestoringVision, #GivingSightDay, and the end of the year, December 31st.

For those who decide to partake in this year-end charitable giving season, it’s important to spend time researching the right nonprofit organization to donate to.  

We encourage companies and people to investigate and ensure their donations are going to charities and causes that are most important to them, their families or their organizations. 

Nonprofits Change Lives 

Every single day, millions of people around the world are in some way touched by a nonprofit organization. Whether it’s a community-based program, a healthcare program, a food program, or an educational program, nonprofit organizations build vibrant and improving communities around the world through the power of donations. 

These nonprofit organizations support health, safety, and education in communities that might otherwise lack the capability to provide it. Nonprofits are the foundation of global health and wellness to protect our planet and future generations.

While issues like hunger, AIDS, Ebola, and Malaria are rampant on the news and around the world, there are issues, such as poor vision, that have been neglected in the past, but are gaining attention in recent years, and for good reason. 

Giving the Gift of Sight 

Imagine a world in which you didn’t have access to the tools you needed to properly see.  

Vision is one of our most important senses and as humans we are extremely reliant on our ability to see, which is evident in how complex our eyes are. 

But as you read this today, over 2 billion people worldwide suffer from an uncorrected vision impairment, and of those upwards of 544 million people only need reading glasses to make the correction but live in impoverished communities lacking access to these life-changing items.  

By providing reading glasses to people in need, you will immediately influence their lives in a handful of positive ways including: 

  • HealthReading glasses make the vision correction needed for people with close range vision problems.  
  • EducationBoth children and adults benefit from near vision correction, giving adults the ability to work, read, learn, and perform daily tasks without keeping children away from school. Adults can also enter continuing education and workforce training.  
  • SafetyHaving clear & focused close-range vision is essential to safely completing hand held tasks and providing for one’s family, such as caring safely for a small child.
  • ProductivityVision correction leads to a 35% increase in productivity and 20% increase in wages. A simple pair of reading glasses gives people the ability to carry out their daily tasks, work, and lead productive lives.
  • Quality of LifeRegaining the ability to see clearly boosts the morale of individuals and allows them to become contributing members of a family or community once again.  
  • Overall CommunityBy providing glasses to impoverished communities without access, it boosts their education rate, median income, economic output, and the overall health of that community.  

Ways to Help Restore Vision This Holiday Season 

The good news is in 2018 there are plenty of ways to get involved during the holiday season, or anytime, and help restore vision to people in need around the world.  

Organizations like RestoringVision are dedicated to correcting vision and providing reading glasses to people in communities that otherwise lack access. You or your organization can join forces with us this giving season and help in three different, but effective ways.  

First, you or your organization can Become a Partner. RestoringVision has a strong network of partners who help in the distribution of glasses to impoverished communities around the globe. Our partners are the ones on the ground taking the glasses overseas and putting them on the faces of people in need. If you are a non-profit organization or mission group looking to make a difference in the world, becoming a partner with RestoringVision is a perfect fit.

Second, you can Become a Sponsor. At RestoringVision we are lucky to be blessed with an amazing group of corporate sponsors. These sponsors not only help provide access to glasses for people in need, but also help us create access to health, education, work, and a better life for these same people. If you are a corporation embarking on a corporate social responsibility program, consider working with us.

There are a variety of ways companies can become a sponsor and become involved in our mission. Our flexible and unique corporate sponsorship programs are adaptable to a company’s budget, structure, business activity, and Corporate Social Responsibility agenda. Our programs include: 

  • One for One Program: The sale of a unit of your product will result in a donation of a pair of glasses to someone in need. This is RestoringVision’s take on the classic buy one give one program. When a customer buys a product, our sponsors make a monetary donation to RestoringVision, which we then convert into a pair of glasses. 
  • Direct Giving Program: Our sponsors can make a direct cash donation that will immediately go to the purchase of glasses for disbursal. 
  • In-Kind Program: RestoringVision makes it easy for manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailer sponsors to donate their excess inventory of reading glasses or new sunglasses. 

Lastly, you can get involved by donating to our cause and helping RestoringVision empower lives by giving the gift of sight to people in need around the world. Make a tax-deductible donation today and every dollar you donate will be converted into glasses delivered to people in need. 

Remember, this holiday season while reflecting on the memories of the past year, carry on the tradition of giving. Whether you donate with your family or through your company or organization, consider helping those in need see and live better. There’s no better time to spread the spirit of the holiday season and make a lasting, positive, impact in people’s lives.