The House of Lords opened its revered doors to Vision Care for Homeless People this week, highlighting the valuable support that the UK homeless charity provides.
With more than 5,000 pairs of glasses now dispensed from the charity’s centres, the Patron Lord Filkin CBE, pointed out to Peers, MPs and optical industry guests that homelessness is becoming more of a problem and more centres are needed –
“We have found it possible to create a low cost, low overhead, service to fill the gaps in society. If the charity did not exist there would be 5,000 people in the UK who had not been helped to better vision.”
The charity’s clinics in London and Birmingham, which provide eye examinations and the dispensing of new glasses in an environment in which homeless people feel comfortable, are soon to be extended.
A new centre is to open in Brighton in June and the London centres are extending their opening times, as Harinder Paul, Chief Executive of the charity explained –
“Within an hour of opening the appointment book for the centres each week most of the appointments have gone. Through largely volunteer staffing we can make a tremendous difference. Our vision is to have a centre in every city in the UK where there is a need and we are now looking northwards.”
Generous donations during the seven years of the charity’s work include support from Horizon, Shamir, Essilor, Hoya, Polaroid, Keeler, Topcon, Boots, Kentoptic, Bondeye Optical, DX Courier, Outside Clinic, Performance Finance, Thomson Software Solutions and Optometry Giving Sight.
To find out more about volunteering or supporting the charity contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.visioncareforhomelesspeople.org
In the photo from left to right:
Stuart Cooksey (Shamir UK Ltd), Stuart Burn (Performance Finance), Nahida Haque (VCHP London Clinic Manager), David Thomson (Thomson Software Solutions), Michael Potter (ABDO Head of Marketing), Ian Wooster (Horizon Optical Co. Ltd.), Janice English (VCHP Trustee P.R.), Charanjit Bharj (VCHP Trustee Legal), Chris Bennett (Optician Magazine), Andrew Slaughter (M.P.), Preston Everard (Kentoptic), Barry Simons (VCHP Trustee Vice-Chair), Elaine Styles (VCHP Trustee Chair), Harinder Paul (VCHP MD), Lesley-Ann Murrey (VCHP Trustee), Jennifer Brower (ABDO) and Jill Lambert (VCHP Trustee Birmingham).