VSP MOBILE EYES PROGRAM CELEBRATED ITS TEN YEAR ANNIVERSARY ON WORLD SIGHT DAY BY RETURNING TO NEW ORLEANS WHERE THE PROGRAM STARTED
Ten years ago, the VSP Mobile Eyes® program evolved from relief efforts following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita to provide eye care and replacement glasses for residents and first responders while equipping doctors, whose practices had been damaged or destroyed, to continue providing care. To celebrate World Sight Day (October 8, 2015) and 10 years of helping people see, VSP Mobile Eyes returned to the community where the program started to provide eye exams and glasses for those in need, in partnership with Optometry Giving Sight and VOSH International.
Held in the Lower Ninth Ward in New Orleans, more than 400 patients received access to free eye exams and glasses with the help of ten optometrists and 20 students and volunteers. Patients received exams through the VSP Mobile Eyes program, which includes three deluxe mobile eye care clinics on wheels that feature exam rooms with the latest technology and dispensaries with popular frame brands donated by Marchon Eyewear. The mobile clinic on-site also included a finishing lab to make glasses on-site with UNITY® lenses donated by VSP Optics Group so most patients received their glasses shortly after their exam.
“We couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate World Sight Day than by living our mission to help people see,” said recently retired VSP Global CEO Rob Lynch, who also volunteered throughout the day. “It was especially meaningful to bring the VSP Mobile Eyes clinic to the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans to continue to provide eye care for a community in need."
This event was part of a broader initiative to raise awareness for eye health on World Sight Day. VSP Global®, along with other members of the North American eye health community, joined forces in a coalition to support Optometry Giving Sight and its annual fundraising campaign, the World Sight Day Challenge. Numerous events were held around the country to raise awareness of the importance of eye health and to provide eye care and eyewear to people in need.
About Optometry Giving Sight
Optometry Giving Sight is the only global fundraising initiative that specifically targets the prevention of blindness and impaired vision due to uncorrected refractive error (URE) – simply the need for an eye examination and glasses. It was established in 2003 by the World Council of Optometry, the Brien Holden Vision Institute and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness as a means of mobilizing support from the global eye care profession and industry to help eliminate the backlog of people who are needlessly blind or vision impaired – currently estimated at more than 600 million worldwide. It is a registered charity in the USA and in Canada. Optometry Giving Sight funds the development of sustainable eye and vision care projects in communities where these do not currently exist. These projects focus on local training and capacity building; infrastructure development and the delivery of accessible and affordable vision care services.
About VSP Global
VSP Global® unites industry-leading businesses to bring the highest quality eye care and eyewear products and services to help people see across the globe. VSP Global businesses include not-for-profit VSP® Vision Care, the largest vision care company with 77 million members and a network of 34,000 eye doctors in the U.S., Australia, United Kingdom, Canada and Ireland; Marchon® Eyewear Inc., one of the three largest global manufacturers, designers and distributors of quality fashion and technologically advanced eyewear and sunwear; Eyefinity®, the largest EHR and premier practice management software company for the eye care industry; VSP Optics Group, industry leaders in new lens technologies, production processes, service and logistics; and VSP Retail Development, delivering a memorable consumer experience through a variety of channels that meet the diverse needs of VSP customers. VSP Global businesses operate in 100 countries on 6 continents.