In 1985, a small group of strangers quickly became friends, united by a joint goal to improve access to eye care services for all, this was the beginning of Vision Aid Overseas.  


Vision Aid Overseas was founded in 1985 by a group of Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians led by our now Honorary Vice President, Brian Ellis MBE. The group were shocked by the number of people, especially children, who were disabled and disadvantaged by poor eyesight simply due to the lack of access to affordable eye tests and glasses. 

 

A shift in focus since 1985


Since the foundation of Vision Aid Overseas, we have shifted our focus from aid to development. In the past, patients in our programme countries would receive second-hand glasses closest to their prescription kindly donated by the UK public.

Whilst Vision Aid Overseas is still supported by UK eye care professionals and a caring public, we now focus on providing a sustainable solution that delivers affordable eye care services and new, low-cost prescription glasses from locally trained eye care professionals to patients in need.To find out more about how we work click here.

 

A few words from the Founder


Brian Ellis, MBE- Founder said;

Unlike Civil Engineers, Agriculturalists and others who must commit several months to achieving change, Optical Professionals have the privilege of being able, in the course of a few days and hours, to make a change and better the life of someone in a developing country by enabling them to see clearly.  But that brings with it the responsibility of exercising the privilege and volunteering for a short assignment with Vision Aid Overseas. 

Read the first 25 years of Vision Aid Overseas


To read the full story of the first 25 years of Vision Aid Overseas, email [email protected] and we will send you a digital copy.