INDEPENDENT NEWS

Watch out for lions world sight day

Published: Mon 27 Sep 2004 11:11 AM
LIONS WORLD SIGHT DAY Sponsored by OPSM and Visique Optometrists
27 September 2004
Watch out! lions world sight day is hunting out your old Eyeglasses and Sunglasses
Lions Clubs New Zealand with the support of Visique Optometrists and OPSM is marking Lions World Sight Day on Wednesday 13 October and we need the public’s help! Lions is asking people to dig-out and donate any unwanted prescription glasses, reading glasses and sunglasses so they may be recycled for use in the South Pacific and locally.
New Zealanders can take their eyeglasses and sunglasses in any condition to their nearest OPSM store or Visique Optometrist during the week of Monday 10 October to Sunday 16 October and know that they will be making a huge difference to someone’s life.
The glasses will be cleaned and graded at one of two Lions eyeglass recycling centres, and distributed around New Zealand by Lions Clubs with the majority being utilised in the South Pacific by Voluntary Ophthalmic Services Overseas (VOSO), a New Zealand wide charity that provides eye examinations and surgery to South Pacific nations, namely Fiji, Soloman Islands and Samoa.
“We are always so heartened to hear stories of the needy recipients of the donated eyewear,” says Ron Lawrence, Chief Executive Officer for Lions Clubs New Zealand. “The World Sight Day activities in New Zealand go a long way to restoring stocks at both eyeglass recycling centres which can then be turned around to those who need them most. VOSO and local Lions Clubs identify the need and fulfil it. The donated optical and sun glasses are in equally important demand.”
Last year Lions Clubs New Zealand, with the support of OPSM and Visique Optometrists, collected over 7,500 pairs of eyeglasses during the week alone, and contributions have kept up throughout the year.
“It is fantastic that VOSO, OPSM and Visique Optometrists work together on this initiative with Lions. What a powerful message they are giving about the importance of eye care both for New Zealanders and our neighbours in the South Pacific. The Recycle for Sight programme not only collects used prescription and sun glasses but it also conveys sight preservation messages. It is all about increasing awareness of sight related issues,” says Mr Lawrence.
Preserving sight has been central to Lions’ volunteerism and fundraising activities worldwide, ever since 1925 when Helen Keller issued a challenge to Lions Clubs to become the “knights of the blind”. For the month of October, Lions members around the world are running sight-related activities to conquer preventable blindness and preserve sight.
ENDS

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