Two Decades of Helping the World See Clearly

Five-year-old Breisy struggled to recognize letters and objects at school. Thanks to support from the Sight For Kids program, a program co-founded by the Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) and Johnson & Johnson Vision, Breisy enjoys a new pair of glasses and—now—she finally sees clearly.

Girl holding up Sight For Kids certificateMaria, Breisy’s mother, described her daughter’s free vision screening and pair of eyeglasses, provided through the Sight For Kids program, as a blessing after economic hardships that prevented her from taking her daughter to an eye care professional.

Over the last two decades, Breisy is only one story of more than 42 million children around the world helped through the Sight For Kids program, the world’s largest-known, school-based eye health program.

LCIF and Johnson & Johnson Vision partnered in 2002 to implement the program that prepares communities with tools critical to providing all children with equal access to quality eye healthcare.

Little boy with new glassesIn low-income schools and underserved communities, Lion volunteers and eye care professionals mobilize to provide comprehensive eye health services—from screening children to providing eyeglasses and special treatments.

At schools across Asia and Africa, teachers are trained to deliver eye health education, perform a visual acuity test, and screen for common eye conditions. When a potential eye problem is detected in the school, a student is referred to a doctor for an exam and the student is provided eyeglasses or other necessary treatments.

Each year more than 3 million students are reached across the globe in India, Kenya, Philippines, Thailand, and most recently in the United States.

“Working together, we’ve created an incredibly powerful program over the last 20 years— reaching millions of children annually,” said Peter Menziuso, Johnson & Johnson VisionWoman gets an eye exam Company Group Chairman. “I’m grateful to Lions for their passion for eye health and applaud the way they partner with eye care professionals, schools, local governments, and community members to make sure as many kids as possible have access to eye health services. Together, we’re making a tangible difference in the lives of children and communities around the world.”

The Sight For Kids program helps with early diagnosis, intervention, and treatment, which is essential for

children’s educational and future success. School-age children without access to eye health services run the risk of difficulty in school, lower quality of life, and even blindness.

As an active member of the program, Ophthalmologist Dr. Freddy Simon is inspired by the children he treats in India.

“I treat adults and children, but the satisfaction I get by treating children is slightly more because they have their whole lives ahead of them,” he said. “By helping children see clearly, we are changing their future, and we are giving them a leg up in life.”

Thanks to the dedication of ophthalmologists, like Dr. Simon, Lions across the world, teachers, Johnson & Johnson Vision, and LCIF, more than 42 million children are given a chance for a better future.

“The ability to see is not a privilege. It is a right owed to every single child in our community and across the globe,” said 2021-2022 LCIF Chairperson Dr. Jung-Yul Choi. “Every child deserves a chance to grow up and see the world clearly, and I cannot wait to see the impact the program will have over the next 20 years, and beyond.”

Visit lionsclubs.org/SFK to learn more about the tremendous impact in communities worldwide.

The Impact Over Two Decades

  • More than 42 million students screened around the world
  • Over 3 million students reached annually
  • More than 600,000 children referred for eyeglasses and other specialty treatments
  • Over 200,000 teachers trained to deliver eye health education, perform visual acuity tests, screen students for common eye conditions