Eyeglass Drive: Local effort to send glasses to the needy in foreign countries | New

A three-month effort to collect glasses for the needy ended in Columbia City. The glasses will soon be distributed to needy people in foreign countries, according to the Lions Club of St. Helens.

Photo shows Columbia City Representatives Kim Karber, Laura Markham and Helen Johnson and Lions Club member Jimmy Jeffrey.

“We have partnered with Lions in the past in their efforts to collect plastic and thought it would be another good project,” said Kim Karber, Columbia City finance clerk. “The citizens here are always very good at getting involved.”

Earlier this spring, a collection box was set up at Columbia City Hall for people to drop off the glasses, and details about the project were published in the city’s regular community newsletter.

Lions Club member Kathy Syrstad said the glasses collected will be sent to the Oregon Lion Sight and Hearing Foundation in Portland to be sorted by type, such as sunglasses, readers and eyeglasses. bifocals, then sent to Coffee Creek Correctional Center where the women working in the jail’s optical program clean them up and check the ordinance. Broken frames are used to harvest parts for repairs.

“The glasses are then taken to countries around the world, such as Mexico and Peru, by optometrists and volunteer assistants who check patients’ eyes and distribute the glasses to help people who otherwise could not afford. pay for them, ”said Kathy Syrstad, Lions Club representative. We are very grateful to these generous ladies from Columbia City for helping to collect over 100 pairs of glasses for us. “

The Lions Club has been leading the eyewear project for about 30 years, according to Syrstad. The St. Helens Club was founded in 1955.

“This is a typical project that we do and it is central to our mission to help people with sight and hearing problems,” she said.

Last year, the Oregon Lions Sight and Hearing Foundation sent glasses to 16 countries.

Anyone wishing to donate eyeglasses can find a collection box at local optometrists offices or contact Lions at [email protected]

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