Specsavers stores across Australia are committed to supporting the communities that support them.
A major community initiative that Specsavers implements in stores nationwide is the ‘Specsavers Community Program’. The initiative aims to raise funds for Specsavers’ national charity of choice, The Fred Hollows Foundation, as well as hundreds of local charities across the country.
For each pair of glasses sold at Specsavers stores nationwide, customers receive a token, which they can use to select which charity they would like to support and a subsequent donation is then made by the store.
Specsavers’ commitment to making high quality eye care affordable to everyone is also reflected through its ongoing partnership with The Fred Hollows Foundation; raising funds for its inspiring work in Australia and the Asia Pacific region, including life-changing cataract surgery to restore sight to the needlessly blind.
Local stores across Australia support The Fred Hollows Foundation as Specsavers’ national charity partner of choice, through the Specsavers Community Program, along with in store charity fundraising events and through sales of Limited Edition Fred Hollows glasses, the ‘Frames with a Beautiful Vision’.
In 2014 and again in 2015, Specsavers joined forces and with The Fred Hollows Foundation in a special project to help ‘Close the Gap’ on vision loss between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. A limited edition frame was released and $25 from each sale was donated to The Foundation.
The late Aboriginal artist, Langaliki Langaliki gave permission for her work to be transferred to the glasses after she had two cataract operations thanks to The Foundation. Regaining her sight gave Langaliki the confidence to spend time with her family and concentrate on her art before she passed away in mid 2016.
Langaliki's colourful and dramatic style, famous from the Ernabella region where she was from, resonated with Australians and the 2014 Limited Edition Fred Hollows glasses sold out in record time, raising $62,500 for The Foundation. Following that, the 2015 Limited Edition Fred Hollows Foundation sunglasses raised $100,000 for The Foundation. Langaliki's legacy is now living on through the thousands that are given sight-restoring cataract surgery from The Fred Hollows Foundation.
The 2014 Limited Edition Fred Hollows glasses sold out in record time and raised $62,500 for The Foundation. Following that, the 2015 Limited Edition Fred Hollows Foundation sunglasses raised $100,000 for The Foundation.
Gabi Hollows, Founding Director at The Fred Hollows Foundation, says the funds are used to help combat debilitating eye conditions among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders such as Trachoma, which is the fourth leading cause of blindness in their community.
“Australia is the only developed country to still have Trachoma. It is a blinding and infectious eye disease that occurs in areas with poor hygiene and living conditions.
The funds donated by Specsavers help make a real impact on how our Aboriginal Community Based Workers combat a disease currently present in 60% of remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
The funds have also helped The Foundation perform hundreds of sight-restoring surgeries since the partnership was created five years ago. For that reason The Foundation is incredibly thankful to Specsavers and their ongoing support,” says Gabi.
Specsavers is committed to its ongoing Specsavers Community Program and its partnership with The Fred Hollows Foundation; raising funds for its inspiring work in Australia and the Asia Pacific region, including life-changing cataract surgery to restore sight to the needlessly blind.
Specsavers Community Program raises $2 million for Australian charities in three years
In three years, Specsavers has raised more than $2 million for charities around the country thanks to the Specsavers Community Program, $953,137 of which has been donated to The Fred Hollows Foundation.
Specsavers stores are locally owned and operated by community-based optometrists who elect a local charity, along with The Fred Hollows Foundation, to support through the Specsavers Community Program, with funds donated out of their own pockets for every pair of glasses sold.
Charities across the country have benefited from these funds. See below a list of some of the Specsavers Community Program recipient organisations and how they have put the funds raised by Specsavers stores to good use.
New South Wales - Chris O’Brien Lifehouse at RPA $80,000
Over 20 NSW based stores have raised more than $80,000 for Sydney cancer hospital Chris O’Brien Lifehouse.
Specsavers has donated to Chris O'Brien Lifehouse through the Community Program for over three years now and the support is helping the charity continue to help those in need suffering from cancer.
Eileen Hannagan, Chief Executive for Chris O’Brien Lifehouse says “As a not-for- profit cancer hospital Lifehouse relies on the generous assistance from our community and we are indebted to Specsavers stores and their customers for their continued support.”
Queensland - State Emergency Service (SES).
Queensland based stores have raised more than $76,000 for the State Emergency Service (SES).
Funds donated to the SES have been used to enable volunteers to assist communities 24/7 during times of emergency and disaster, through providing essential equipment that is required to perform the many varied tasks involved when emergencies arise.
Peter Jeffrey, Assistant Commissioner, SES says,
“We are very grateful for Specsavers and their customer’s generous support of the SES. Their donation allows us to continue to provide much needed support to the community during flood and storm emergencies, focussing especially on the most vulnerable members of the community.”
Western Australia – Place of Friendship
Western Australian based stores have raised more than $26,500 for Place of Friendship, previously known as Friends of Autism.
Funds donated to Place of Friendship have been used to assist people living with disabilities across Western Australia through a variety of programs including pre-vocational training, counselling, school holiday programs and advocacy. See our programs section for further details.
Dee Marlow, CEO of Place of Friendship says,
“We are very grateful for Specsavers and their generous customer’s support of Place of Friendship. Their donation allows us to make a real and meaningful difference to the lives of those touched by Autism.”
Victoria - The Royal Children's Hospital Foundation
Victorian based stores have raised more than $100,000 for The Royal Children's Hospital Foundation.
Funds donated to The Royal Children's Hospital Foundation last year were used by the RCH Education Institute to create a fun and interactive children's book written and illustrated by and for young patients. In 2017, Specsavers will be funding a speech generating device that will allow non-verbal patients to communicate through eye tracking technology. The RCH Education Institute supports young learners to continue their learning journey when they spend time in the hospital.
Giovina Cicchitti, Corporate Engagement Manager for the RCH Foundation says,
“The generosity of Specsavers and their customers helps us to make a difference to the future of children’s health and provide outcomes that are above and beyond the hospital’s normal day-to- day care. We are very thankful they have chosen us as their local charity and are proud to have had the opportunity to engage the minds of our youngest patients to produce this fun and interactive children’s book.”