CONTINUING EDUCATION, 1 CE Credit – $9.99, 1 Hour, General Knowledge, Level 1, Release date: October 2007, Expiration date: October 31, 2012

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Give A Little Bit

Give a little bit of your time for free
Give a little bit
I'll give a little bit of my inventory
See the man with the lonely eyes
Give him sight, he'll be surprised


Why do you give, donate, or volunteer? I asked and ECPs responded:

I believe in the cause
It makes me feel good
For the tax write off
My wife makes me
To widen my circle of friends
It comes back tenfold

Giving has no boundaries, shows no prejudice and is expressed in many different ways, shapes and forums. I like to believe there's no competition when it comes to giving, since the focus is on need and never greed. You might find yourself volunteering side by side with someone who works for “them”.
"Them" are the good people in this article that know the act of giving.

Angel Optical
Jacqui Pearson runs a small lab in Hokah, Minnesota called Angel Optical that makes hemianoptic lenses, Franklin bifocals, prism segs and macular degeneration lenses. The money that is made on this work goes to fund an eyeglass charity by providing free lenses for low income patients. Jacqui is a fix-it herself-er and can work miracles on lab equipment that others have by far given up on. Her eyes are set on having a 1-2 person wholesale lab to produce lenses exclusively for those patients with special needs. To find out how to join her in this quest, please visit Angel Optical's Facebook page.

Essilor Vision Foundation
Essilor Vision Foundation is on a mission to eliminate poor vision and its lifelong consequences. As part of World Sight Day, Essilor employees pledge to raise $1 million over the next three years to provide eyeglasses to children in need.

Eyes Of Faith Optical
I met Jim & Amy Schneider, the owners of Eyes Of Faith Optical, in 2009. I think “Give” could be their middle names. I asked Jim to share with me a brief description of their work.

"We're not a typical eyewear brand. Our vision is to design and distribute high-quality eyewear that allows people to express their faith, and for that purchase to provide the gift of sight to someone who wouldn't normally have access to vision care. Wear & Share™ is the essence of our purpose - when you wear a pair of Eyes of Faith glasses, you share a pair of glasses, readers, or sunglasses, depending on the person's need, in the name of your faith.

"We accomplish the Wear & Share™ purpose through our partnership with Sight Ministries, who conducts clinics and delivers eyewear to places like Kenya, Malawi, Panama, and many others, where entire communities may never have had the opportunity to see clearly, or protect their vision with a pair of sunglasses. Growing the Wear & Share™ program is our top priority, as a remote community's needs can only be understood once the mission team arrives. This program can help ensure that every mission is fully equipped with enough prescription glasses, sunglasses, and readers to fit each community member with the form of eyewear from which they'll benefit the most."

HOYA gives back by sponsoring Optometry Giving Sight, Prevent Blindness, Transitions/VSP outreach mobile clinic and various local events that touch the lives of those in need.

L'Amy America
Stephen Rappoport, President of L'Amy America, is donating the gift of sight with the help of his valued customers. Beginning in mid October through the end of December, for every L'Amy America frame sold, another will be donated to someone in need. The frames will be donated to one of several highly respected charities on behalf of the L'Amy customer. A tracking sheet is available for ECPs to keep record of L'Amy frames sold. This immensely successful charity effort previously resulted in the donation of nearly 8,000 frames.

Lions Clubs International
For nearly 100 years, Lions Club members have worked on projects designed to prevent blindness, restore eyesight and improve eye health and eye care for hundreds of millions of people worldwide.

Partnering with other sight related organizations they are able to offer services from eye screenings to cataract surgeries. They accept used eyeglasses, reading glasses, sunglasses and children's glasses.

New Eyes For The Needy
Since its founding in 1932, New Eyes has helped more than 7,500,000 people in the U.S. and 87 countries around the world to see clearly. They accept and recycle donated eyeglasses for distribution to poor people overseas. They also raise funding to benefit their U.S. eyeglass voucher program by selling donated jewelry and giftware.

As you will see, this doctor's vision for giving back clearly sets him apart from the rest by offering those in need a recyclable, spectacle, receptacle.

Dr. Jeffrey Lynch went to Peru with a team of medical volunteers to perform cataract surgeries on the poor. Those with vision problems showed up in droves but the vast majority of them needed eyeglasses and not surgery. His somewhat frustrating trip lead him in another direction to offer sight to the needy. Dr. Lynch founded Respectacle, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that uses the power of the Internet to facilitate redistribution of quality, used eyeglasses to underserved communities worldwide. Donated eyeglasses deemed to be in “excellent” or “good” used condition are cleaned, categorized, and loaded into their online database based on the prescription. Rather than shipping a box of used eyeglasses somewhere and hoping for a match, those in need can enter in their actual prescription and order a specific pair.

VOSH/International-Volunteer Optometric Services To Humanity
The primary mission of VOSH/International is to facilitate the provision and the sustainability of vision care worldwide for people who can neither afford nor obtain such care. Members include optometrists, ophthalmologists, opticians, medical personnel and trained laypersons.

“Volunteering to improve eye care to the needy does not mean you have to spend a week in rural communities without electricity or running water. We have many levels of opportunity, starting with donating a pair of eyeglasses.” Dr. Ellis Potter, President, VOSH/International

And there you have it, a starter list of reasons and ways to give the gift of sight. So loosen up those purse strings, roll up your sleeves and open your eyes to the needs that surround you.

If you can't figure out how to give then maybe John Seegers, the owner of can give you a free lesson or two on what it takes to become a more competent optical dispensing professional. He spends countless hours giving help to ECPs in need and it all starts with you.

I would like to thank the above ECPs, the academy, the producers and the editor for allowing me to donate such valuable website information. Those who could not be reached for comment were out doing great things.

Remember that no donation is too small, except for no donation. So Give A Little Bit.

* "Give a Little Bit" was written by Roger Hodgson, co-founder of Supertramp.

Ginny Johnson

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Posted: 12/10/2012 4:10:18 PM

BRAVO, Ginny!!!
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