The Athens Lions Club

Eyeglass Recycling

The Athens Lions Club collects used eyeglasses as part of the Recycle For Sight program aligned with Lions Clubs International.  Donation collection boxes are available at the following locations:

  • Athens County Public Library, 30 Home Street, Athens
  • Walmart, 929 East State Street, Athens
  • New To You store, 90 Columbus Road, Athens
  • Athens Eye Professionals, 199 Columbus Road, Athens
  • Christ Lutheran Church, 69 Mill Street, Athens
  • Athens Farmer's Market, Athens Community Center, 701 E State Street, Athens (During Farmer's Market Events)

The World Health Organization estimates 153 million people around the world have uncorrected refractive errors (near-sightedness, far-sightedness, astigmatism).  Refractive errors can be easily corrected with eyeglasses, yet millions of people in third world countries lack access to basic servies.

Once we collect the glasses, we send them to one of two organizations: Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, or to the SVOSH program at OSU's College of Optometry.  Donated eyeware are cleaned, sorted, graded (using a lensometer to determine the prescription) and packaged by prescription.  Once or twice a year, the students, doctors and Lions go to mission trips in other countries and set up eyeglass care camps (often as part of larger health clinics).  Hundreds of people from miles away come to get their eyes checked for free and get fitted with the recycled glasses.  In many cases, people leave seeing clearly for the first time in their lives!

Why do we send the glasses to foreign countries and not give them to the needy in America?  Because it is illegal in the US to give someone the prescription of someone else.

How can you help?  Just drop off your extra, unwanted eyeglasses in one of our collection boxes at any of the locations above.  We can use the following:

  • Prescription glasses;
  • Reading glasses;
  • Sunglasses

  THANK YOU for your support!  

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