Saving Stuff

Old glasses can be recycled

Published: 27 September 2008

Whilst going through some old boxes recently I stumbled across my pair of old glasses that I had when I was 15.  I fortunately do not need to wear glasses any more but thought it would be a shame to throw them away as they are in perfect condition.  So I did a bit of research to see if they could be recycled or sent to someone who needs them in Africa.  As you can imagine there are a lot of people in poor countries with vision problems simply because they can not afford to get their eyes regularly examined and probably need glasses. Instead their eyesight deteriorates which means they can really struggle to earn a living and carry out their usual daily tasks.  Also children with impaired vision will fall behind at school which in turn will affect their future.

Pairs of glassesAnyway, I was very pleased to discover that there are many charities that will happily take your old glasses and donate them to someone that really needs them.  All branches of Dolland and Aitchison and most Boots Opticians have glasses recycling bins where you can deposit your old glasses to go to a needy cause.  Also various other opticians and even some supermarkets have collection boxes too, so look out for them or ask. You can also go directly to various organisations that actually deal solely with providing glasses to people in the developing world. For example Vision Aid Overseas, in association with Kodak Lens, have a scheme called the Second Sight Project which is completely dedicated to helping people in third world countries who are affected with poor eye sight. You can order a donation envelope via their website or deposit in collection boxes at your nearest Kodak Lens Vision Centre or Vision Express.

I'm sure most people have a pair of old glasses that they don't need anymore either because their prescription has changed or they have bought a new pair because they are more fashionable. So think before you throw them away, it doesn't matter how old and unfashionable they may be, give them to a good cause. They could really help someone in a Third World Country and dramatically improve their lives by improving their eyesight.