Sight First Spectacle Collection

If anyone has ever been in a place where all light disappear and everyone is left in total darkness unable to see their own hands in front of them, this is the state millions of blind and visually impaired people around the world experience most of the time. Sight First is a major International Lions project, and Gosford City Lions is a huge supporter of Sight First and have collected thousands of spectacles no longer in use by people having had optical prescriptions altered over a period of time.  

Thanks to the efforts of the lions and local optometrists as well as local support, the Gosford City Lions have up to date supplied thousands of eyeglasses delivered to grateful recipients in need of optical correction.   Glasses collected are sent to a retired optometrist in Queensland who donate his time and skills to grade the glasses. Volunteers then take them overseas to places like Nepal, India, Uganda, Ethiopia, Mali, Niger, Colombia, Indonesia, Timor-Leste, and other third world locations where they are distributed to the visually impaired and under-privileged people who lack the means and funding to get optical aid by other means.

According to Lions Club International Foundation (LCIF), Sight First is Lions most ambitious and most successful initiative ever.   Thanks to Sight First, Lions have assisted in restoring sight to 4.6 million people worldwide through cataract surgeries, and helped to prevent serious vision loss for more than 20 million people. Continued funding of this programme aims to improve eye care services for millions of people battling visual impairment worldwide.   Sight First was launched by Lions in 1989 to battle preventable blindness. Sadly, 80 percent of the worlds blind are needlessly without sight. Through Sight First, Lions have assisted to prevent blindness by supporting cataract surgeries, building and expanding eye hospitals and clinics, and distributing sight-saving medication as well as funding training of eye care professionals.

Lions have raised more than US$415 million to date to fund the Sight First program and save to sight around the world. This initiative is of great importance to Lions, and continued support is imperative if we are to have any chance of getting through the monumental task of helping the third world to see properly. For more information, you can phone Lion John on Ph. (02) 4365 1975

Information for people interstate and overseas is also available from the

Sight First   Web Site.

This site provide complete information on the latest Lions International project, "Campaign SightFirst II".

Cancelled stamps needed.

The Lions Club of Gosford City - East Gosford is collecting used stamps and looking for support from the community.   For many years the Lions International Stamp club (LISC) has been collecting used stamps from all over Australia and overseas.   These stamps are sold to raise funds for the Australian Lions Children's Mobility Foundation (Australia), Lions Schools Projects in South Africa, Australia, Canada and Netherlands, and Eye Camp Sponsorship.   The Catholic Mission at Burkina Faso has also been a beneficiary working to ease suffering of refugees with lifesaving clean water, food kits, medicine and other essentials.

The Australian Chapter of Lions International Stamp Club (LISC) issues a cachet at each Australian (MD201) convention with stamps usually cancelled with an official Australia Post cancellation.   At a recent convention in Canberra a cheque for more than $4,500 was handed over representing the result of stamp sales over the previous 12 months.   Since 2005 the (LISC) club has contributed over $22,500 to these projects overseas.   Over 100 countries have issued postage stamps with the Lions logo in recognition of Lions Club activities in their countries.   The first Lions stamp was issued by Cuba in1940 at the 24th International convention in Havana.

The problems facing the Australian Lions stamp collection is that Australia Post are selling fewer and fewer stamps as more and more people are emailing each other.   Many companies send franked stamped envelopes and cancelled stamps are getting more difficult to get.   We therefore ask for public assistance in this endeavour.   We are collecting fewer stamps but suffering around the world is not decreasing.   We recently received a donation of a collection from a deceased estate which netted almost a $1,000 and we accept donations of 'stamp collections' that are no longer required such as deceased estates, etc.   Club Secretary Ross Payne says " We ask people sending stamps to clip around the stamp leaving no less that 3 or 4 centimetres of paper and no more than 5 to 7 centimetres".   Every stamp donated is sent to auction and all money raised directed to help suffering in third world communities.

Local Chapters of LISC have been formed in many states of the USA and Canada as well as Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, India, Brazil, Italy, Netherlands and United Kingdom and Ireland.   If you would like further information you can contact Lion Ron Jane on (02) 4357 1513. Stamps can be mailed to:- PO Box 2074 Gosford, NSW, 2250

We also continue to ask for donations of spectacles no longer in use by people whose eyesight change from time to time.   These glasses are graded, cleaned, and sent to countries for distribution to people who otherwise can't see properly and cannot afford to get visual correction.   Thousands of pairs of glasses have been sent to the Solomon Islands, Nepal, Tanzania and other African nations. India and PNG are also requesting assistance.   Without your continuing support we would not be able to meet the needs of so many people worldwide.

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