RestoringVision improves the lives of 20 million people worldwide to see clearly. RestoringVision has reached an impressive milestone of providing 20 million people with clear vision. The global nonprofit enhances people’s lives by providing vision screenings and glasses to people living in poverty worldwide without access to these life-changing services and tools. Its predominant program addresses presbyopia, an age-related eye condition that impacts all adults and accounts for 50% of the world’s vision problems.
“It’s incredibly meaningful to us to have brought clear vision to 20 million individuals who didn’t have equitable access to the vision care and glasses they needed,” said Executive Director Dr. Pelin Munis. “In just six years since we first announced this goal, and despite a global pandemic, we have scaled our impact from 5 million to 20 million people served through our vision and glasses delivery programs.”
Mark Sachs founded the nonprofit in his California basement in 2003 after seeing the lack of access to glasses for people living in poor communities during vision-care mission trips. “When I started RestoringVision, my goal was to help people improve their vision and improve their lives,” said Sachs. “Reaching this remarkable achievement means 20 million people can continue to support their families, their communities and live productive lives without the barrier of poor vision. It is a marker that says, ‘If this is possible, what more can be done?'”
Munis attributes the organization’s success to its unique model and its Global Access Program, which was created in 2015 to bring its vision programs to the largest global health and humanitarian organizations. “We are extremely proud to have incorporated our programs into the work of over 2,500 NGOs and government social service agencies in 144 countries to date. We now have plans to accelerate our impact to reach even more people living in poverty, including refugees and other marginalized populations.”
“We celebrate this milestone with the many visionaries who have made this moment possible, including our board members—past and present—as well as our corporate donors and partners,” said Kevin Hassey, board chair. Corporate donors include FGX International, National Vision Inc., Warby Parker, Jimmy Fairly and others who have made significant contributions as have project partners, including Americares, Management Sciences for Health Peru (MSH Peru), Eyes on Africa and many more.
RestoringVision has partnered with Americares, a leading global health organization, since 2016 providing glasses to more than 3.6 million people affected by poverty or disaster. “We are so grateful for their continuous support and are incredibly proud of the work we’ve been able to achieve together to reach even more people in need,” said Americares Chief Medical Officer Dr. Julie Varughese.
National Vision Inc. has supported RestoringVision since 2007. “We are proud to work with RestoringVision and celebrate being part of their enormous milestone of positively impacting the lives of 20 million people,” said National Vision CEO Reade Fahs, also a RestoringVision board member.
Sherry Grigsby, Eyes on Africa founder, reflected on RestoringVision’s milestone, recalling people helped through the organization’s work. “I think about the woman in Uganda who was thrilled to thread the needle wearing her new glasses. I think about the elderly Masai gentleman in Tanzania who didn’t read or write but wanted to cut his fingernails safely. I think about the farmworker in Ghana who said she could finally see the difference between the coffee seedlings and the weeds,” Grigsby said. “Each one of those fortunate people has had their life opened up to unimagined productivity and joy.”
“Milestones like this are only possible through partnerships. We’re incredibly grateful for the people and organizations, past and present, who have helped us reach 20 million people around the world with clear vision,” said Munis.
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