Earlier this year, we featured a really cool company called WarbyParker Eyewear (if you missed that post read it here). We like WarbyParker because of their “Buy a Pair Give a Pair” slogan. Essentially, this slogan ensures that the money that we, as customers, spend on buying a pair of their uniquely designed glasses, helps provide funding to a organization that focuses on bringing affordable glasses to the poor. VisionSpring is one of those partner organizations.
The founders of VisionSpring identified a problem: “Low-income people almost universally lack access to affordable glasses.” In response, they founded an organization that brings “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 communities worldwide, with the training and the resources to start their own businesses selling glasses to people within their communities. 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 pair of these 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 communities 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?