The Green Minute – Lions Clubs: Recycling Eyeglasses
June 29, 2013

The Green Minute – Lions Clubs: Recycling Eyeglasses

Courtesy of Pat Byington, The Green Register Editor

When you think of recycling everyday items that people use, eyeglasses are one item you think would be impossible to recycle or re-use.

For today’s Green Minute, we have the answer to the eyeglass recycling dilemma.

Lions Club International is one of the world’s largest service organizations, with over 46,000 clubs and 1.35 million members worldwide. Nearly 100 years ago, in 1925, Helen Keller challenged Lions to become “knights of the blind in the crusade against darkness.” Lions Club accepted that challenge making the issue to improve sight and prevent blindness one of their global priorities.

According to The World Health Organization, 153 million people have uncorrected refractive errors (near-sightedness, far-sightedness or astigmatism). Most of these vision impairments are quickly diagnosed and easy to treat with corrective lenses.

It costs the Lions Club less than 8 cents to provide a pair of recycled eyeglasses. The Lions Club has 2900 clubs in the United States and include collection programs in almost every community.

You can find a collection site by contacting the local club or visit a regional recycling center. Here is the list of Lions Club regional eyeglasses recycling centers with directions and addresses for the U.S. collection sites.

An extraordinary program – beyond the eyeglasses recycling programs, The Lions Club list of accomplishments to prevent blindness and improve sight include:

  • Saved the sight of more than 15 million children by providing eye screenings, glasses and other treatments through Sight for Kids.
  • Established or strengthened pediatric eye care centers that have helped more than 120 million children.
  • Helped halt the spread of trachoma in Ethiopia by providing 10 million doses of the sight-saving drug azithromycin annually.
  • Prevented serious vision loss for more than 30 million people worldwide.
  • Improved eye care for 100 million people by training more than 650,000 eye care professionals and building 315 eye hospitals.
  • Distributed more than 147 million treatments for river blindness.
  • Provided nearly 8 million cataract surgeries.
  • Vaccinated 41 million children in Africa against measles – a leading cause of childhood blindness.

The Lion’s Club has an incredible legacy and represents a very worthy human and green cause.

Image Credit: ollyy / Shutterstock

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