RANCHO CORDOVA, Calif., March 2, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, thousands of school-aged children and their teachers will celebrate the National Education Association's Read Across America Day held annually on Dr. Seuss' birthday. And this year, VSP Vision Care with the help of Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) is helping a special group of kids celebrate in a whole new way – with free eye exams and glasses – to help them see clearly, read more and reach their full potential.
In 2015, VSP launched the #EyeGiveBack program, an effort to help children in need see. For every VSP Direct individual vision insurance plan purchased through #EyeGiveBack, VSP committed to donating a gift certificate that provides access to a no-cost eye exam and glasses to a child in need, up to a retail value of $1 million. In total, as many as 3,000 students in the Richland School District in South Carolina will benefit from increased access to vision care. The distribution of the gift certificates was made possible through VSP's charity partner, RIF.
"Our mission is to help people see, and the #EyeGiveBack program gave us an additional way to expand access to vision care for the 20 percent of children who struggle to read because of vision problems," said Kate Renwick-Espinosa, president, VSP Vision Care. "Providing access to comprehensive eye exams when children are young can help ensure correctable vision problems don't become permanent. We want every child to see what's possible with clear vision."
"We are so thankful to VSP for making no-cost eye exams and eyewear available to eligible students in our district," said Ida Thompson, director, Instructional Technology Services, Richland School District One. "Thousands of students will benefit greatly from these products and services, maximizing their potential and educational experience."
RIF is the nation's largest children's literacy organization that inspires children to be lifelong readers by delivering new, free books and literacy resources to children who need them most. Together with VSP Vision Care, they identified the school district in South Carolina in need of eye exams and glasses and helped coordinate the donation.
"We are delighted to partner with VSP Vision Care to provide glasses and eye care to children who need them most," noted Carol H. Rasco, president and CEO at RIF. "The better children can see, the better they can read and learn and we're delighted so many children at RIF programs in South Carolina will have the ability to improve their well-being."
Learn more at VSPDirect.com/EyeGiveBack.
About VSP Global
VSP Global® unites industry-leading businesses to bring the highest quality eye care and eyewear products and services to help people see across the globe. VSP Global businesses include not-for-profit VSP® Vision Care, the largest vision care company with 77 million members and a network of 34,000 eye doctors in the U.S., Australia, United Kingdom, Canada and Ireland; Marchon® Eyewear Inc., one of the three largest global manufacturers, designers and distributors of quality fashion and technologically advanced eyewear and sunwear; Eyefinity®, the largest EHR and premier practice management software company for the eye care industry; VSP Optics Group, industry leaders in new lens technologies, production processes, service and logistics; and VSP Retail Development, delivering a memorable consumer experience through a variety of channels that meet the diverse needs of VSP customers. VSP Global businesses operate in 100 countries on 6 continents.
To date, through Eyes of Hope® initiatives that include Sight for Students® gift certificates, VSP Global businesses have invested close to $175 million in no-cost eye care and eyewear for nearly one million people in need.
About Reading Is Fundamental
Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) transforms lives through the power of books. By providing children in need with access to books of their choosing, RIF empowers young minds to embrace the world of reading and develop a love of learning. As the nation's largest children's literacy organization, RIF has provided more than 412 million books to 40 million RIF kids over 50 years, inspiring generations to read, learn and grow. Visit us online to learn more, www.rif.org.
SOURCE VSP Vision Care