Usable Eyeglasses Give New Life

Refractive errors can be easily corrected with eye glasses, yet millions living in low and middle income countries lack access to basic eye care services. Lions have recognized the urgent need for corrective lenses and collect usable glasses in their communities to support the Lions Recycle For Sight Program. See complete information about this service below.

Eyeglasses Collection Sites

Park Nicollet Wayzata Clinic - South Main Lobby Mailbox

250 Central Avenue North

Wayzata, Minnesota  55391-1206

(952) 993-8250

Art of Optiks Clinic

747 Lake Street East

Wayzata, Minnesota  55391-1712

(952) 404-2020

Bright Eyes Vision Clinic

13889 Ridgedale Drive

Minnetonka, Minnesota  55305-1768

(763) 241-1090

Division Optical

852 Lake Street East

Wayzata, Minnesota  55391-4523

(952) 476-4185

Family Eye Clinic and Contact Lens Center

1160 Wayzata Boulevard East

Wayzata, Minnesota 55391-1963

(952) 473-7505

Huxley Optical

1310 Wayzata Boulevard East, Suite “B”

Wayzata, Minnesota  55391-1952

(651) 373-0748

Messiah United Methodist Church – Atrium

17805 County Road 6

Plymouth, Minnesota  55447-2904

(763) 473-6968

Park Nicollet Eye Care and Optical Store Minnetonka Carlson Parkway Clinic

15111 Twelve Oaks Center Drive

Minnetonka, Minnesota  55305-5201

(952) 993-3150

Park Nicollet Golden Valley Clinic

8401 Golden Valley Road, Suite 100

Golden Valley, Minnesota  55427-4488

(952) 993-8359

Park Nicollet Plymouth Clinic - Front Entrance Box

4155 County Road 101 North, Suite 1

Plymouth, Minnesota  55446-2307

(952) 993-8900

Vision Smith

4190 Vinewood Lane North, Suite 109

Plymouth, Minnesota  55442-1771

(763) 559-5522

Eyeglasses Recycling Project:

What it is and how it Works

The Wisconsin Lions Foundation’s (WLF) Eyeglass Recycling Center is located in Rosholt, Wisconsin, on the same property as the Wisconsin Lions Camp. It is one of 19 Lions International Certified Eyeglass Recycling Centers in the world. The WLF project was established in 1990 by a grant from Campaign Sight First through the Lions Club International Foundation (LCIF). The Eyeglass Recycling Center (EGRC) was built in 1994 with a grant from LCIF. In the fall of 2001, construction began to double the size of the EGRC. Today, the EGRC collects, on average, 800,000 pairs of glasses annually.

Where Do the Glasses Come From?

Lions Club members across the state are encouraged to distribute free collection buckets to places such as doctors’ offices, hospitals, eye clinics, post offices, banks, funeral homes and schools. WLF picks up glasses at conventions across the state, glasses are boxed up and dropped off, or sent via mail to the EGRC throughout the year. The Rosholt EGRC also receives collections from the Lions of Michigan, Minnesota, North and South Dakota, Iowa and Illinois. Notably, the Minnesota Lions have delivered 12 million pairs of eyeglasses over the past 30 years.

What Happens to the Glasses?

When glasses are received, they are sorted and checked over by our EGRC staff to determine their condition. Unfortunately, about 35% are disposed due to condition of the glasses. However, if a broken frame has gold or precious metal, it will be stripped and saved to be smelted to offset the cost of running the EGRC. A group of Lions Club members from District B1 volunteer regularly to strip our glasses and prepare them to be used for precious metals. If the glasses are in are in good condition, they will be cleaned and packed into donated dairy crates. These crates are shipped to correctional facilities throughout Wisconsin.

Inmates from one federal and two state correctional facilities in Wisconsin assist in the recycling process. They wash, read the prescriptions with a Lensometer and individually package the glasses into a plastic bag with the prescription written on them. Glasses are then packaged 50 pairs to a box according to prescription and gender.

Through medical missions and the outreach of various groups, Lions eyeglass recycling centers throughout the world distribute eyeglasses to over 49 developing countries. In 2021-22, WLF’s Eyeglass Recycling Center shipped 88,914 pairs to 24 missions, including to Guatemala, Ecuador, Africa, Philippines and Mexico. Also in 2021, glasses were sent to the Wisconsin Lions Missions to help the Afghan refugees at Fort McCoy.


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