Earlier this year, we featured a really cool company called WarbyParker Eyewear (if you missed that post read it here). We like WarbyParker because their “Buy a Pair Give a Pair” slogan promises that the money we as customers spend to buy a pair of their uniquely designed glasses helps provide funding to a partner organization that focuses on bringing affordable glasses to those in need of them. VisionSpring is one of those partner organizations.
The founders of VisionSpring identified a problem; “Low-income people almost universally lack access to affordable glasses,” so they founded an organization to combat this problem by bringing “high-quality, low-cost vision care to neglected communities across the developing world.” With the help of individual donors, and companies like WarbyParker, VisionSpring equips “Vision Entrepreneurs” in low-income community’s worldwide, with the training and the resources to start their own businesses selling glasses to the people of their community. In addition to equipping Vision Entrepreneurs, VisionSpring uses the input their customers provide, to develop glasses that completely meet their customers needs and expectations.
To date, vision entrepreneurs have sold over 610,000 glasses within four developing countries. VisionSpring estimates that each one of these sold glasses represents and “average increase in productivity of 35%, meaning more ability to work, learn and support a family.” By eliminating the burden of poor vision, VisionSpring is equipping people in low-income community’s with the ability to make a more meaningful contribution to their society’s economic growth, which also impacts their country’s overall development. How’s that for killing two birds with one stone?