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Donate Your Used Glasses to Someone Who Needs Them

Give the Gift of Sight

Being able to see properly is an important part of health. Unfortunately not everyone can afford to buy themselves proper glasses. Just like used clothes or sneakers, you can donate your used glasses. LensCrafters, Pearle Vision, Sears, Target, Sunglass Hut, and BJ's Optical all donate used glasses to Give the Gift of Sight, a program that gives glasses to underprivileged people in North America and developing countries. All you have to do is drop your old glasses off at one of the locations and the program collects, cleans, repairs, and catalogs them into a computer system so they'll be properly donated to someone who'll be very happy to be able to see them.

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NorthernLibs NorthernLibs 7 years
ReplaceMyContacts started a program that basically asks if you want to donate old glasses when you're buying new contact lenses. Makes sense. Doing something nice was never so easy. They'll send the box and pay for shipping. Lenses will be donated to various international vision care organizations AND you'll even get a $5 credit back from your lens order. Everyone wins. Thanks for the great summary of other resources above!
bottlebohemia bottlebohemia 9 years
I was going to post what aimeeb did, I donated several pairs through there and even got co-workers to pitch in! All it takes is 1 e-mail :)
Spectra Spectra 9 years
njau--I've done programs similar to yours. I've been to Central America and Mexico with groups of doctors and optometrists and boxes of donated glasses from the Lions' Club. People would line up for a mile just to be able to get a pair of glasses and be able to see clearly for the first time in their lives. I remember one very nearsighted old man who got a pair of glasses and was so amazed that he could actually see clearly and be able to read without putting the book right up to his face. It was a very rewarding experience and I hope to be able to do it again. Oh, and yeah...make sure your glasses are in good shape and not missing lenses or anything like that. But don't be shy of donating glasses that you might think have a weird prescription...sometimes we NEED a pair of very strong lenses. And if you have them, PLEASE donate prescription sunglasses. Many people in these Central American countries work outdoors in very sunny weather and having sunglasses helps them avoid getting UV damage to their eyes.
njau njau 9 years
I go to Optometry school, so I know quite a bit about this through one of our programs - which we go to other countries and provide eye care and glasses to those unfortunate. Just make sure (and pass this around) that the pair of glasses is still within good shape, any of them missing pieces, we unfortuately have to throw away. Sometimes people keep their frame for new lenses and then wonder what to do with the old - and unfortunately again there is no magic frame that can fit the lenses on their own. But still donate! It's always worth it.
dcroan dcroan 9 years
This is a great post. Thanks fitsugar. If you're developing your company into a "green company" this is a great way to reduce waste and help the world. Yes we can.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
I've donated mine to "Unite for Sight" several times in the past.
freegracefrom freegracefrom 9 years
Thanks for the heads up! I'm sure I have a bunch of pairs lying around the house somewhere, if I haven't already thrown them away or donated them.
Linda-McP Linda-McP 9 years
This is a wonderful project. I'll be dropping mine off later this week. Thanks for the reminder!
Greentea1203 Greentea1203 9 years
I've always donated my old glasses when I got new ones when I was little. I bought a pair of Chanel frames last year and I need to donate my old ones that I've had since high school that I know I'll never wear again. Thanks for the reminder! Plus it gives me an excuse to go to the mall (where Lens Crafters is). Like I needed one :P
kiddylnd kiddylnd 9 years
Oh wow! I didn't know about this at all. I only have two pairs of old ones but I can definitely share the love. I'll have to find them both and head out to drop them off this weekend. I am fortunate enough that I can afford my glasses and contacts through insurance but I remember a time when it was more of a struggle. This is a great idea! I'm blind as a bat, so hopefully my scrip will fit someone out there.
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