Optometry Giving Sight Sets $1 Million Goal for World Sight Day Challenge

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GOLDEN, Colo.—Now in its seventh year, the World Sight Day Challenge has set a goal of $1 million for its 2014 campaign. Organized by Optometry Giving Sight, the global initiative that raises funds to help those who lack access to an eye exam and a pair of glasses, the World Sight Day Challenge invites all members of the global eyecare community to make a fundraising pledge, or a monthly or annual donation, on or before World Sight Day, Oct. 9, 2014.

Participants are encouraged to be as creative as possible when engaging patients, customers and employees with fundraising events throughout the September and October challenge period. Examples of the ways in which many of the eyecare professionals raised funds last year can be seen here: World Sight Day Challenge Highlights 2013.

“Each year more and more optometrists, students, practice staff and optical companies are choosing to invite their friends, family, customers and patients to take the challenge,” said Clive Miller, CEO, Optometry Giving Sight. “It’s easy and fun. Who wouldn’t make a small donation to help give people access to the eyecare they need?”

Manny (pictured) is the new face for the 2014 Challenge. He was one of the tens of thousands who lost everything when tropical cyclone Yolanda hit the Philippines last November. Optometry Giving Sight supported the efforts of Third World Eye Care Society of Canada, which brought volunteers and resources to the country in late January. More than 8,000 people received glasses as a result of their efforts.

Optometry Giving Sight was established in 2003 by the World Council of Optometry, the Brien Holden Vision Institute and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) to mobilize the global eyecare profession and industry to help eliminate the backlog of people who are needlessly blind or vision impaired, currently estimated at more than 600 million worldwide.

World Sight Day is an annual day of awareness held on the second Thursday of October to focus global attention on blindness and vision impairment. It is coordinated by the IAPB as part of the Vision 2020 Global Initiative. It is supported by eye health organizations around the world, including Optometry Giving Sight, and it is included on the official World Health Organization (WHO) calendar. This year, the call to action for World Sight Day is “No More Avoidable Blindness” and will draw attention to the key interventions that are crucial for the success of the WHO Global Action Plan target, reducing avoidable blindness by 25 percent by 2019.

To make or pledge your donation, or to register your intention to raise funds as a participant in this year’s World Sight Day Challenge, visit givingsight.org or call (888) OGS-GIVE.