Oakley & OneSight Delivered Vision Care to 10,000 in Mamelodi, South Africa. Oakley Sponsored a Two-Week OneSight Eye Care Clinic Providing Vision Care to Residents in Need.
FOOTHILL RANCH, Calif., October 1, 2010 – Oakley, Inc. today announced that through its sponsorship of a two-week OneSight eye care clinic in Mamelodi, South Africa, 10,000 residents received vision care who otherwise could not afford it.
Oakley employees, athletes and local celebrities joined OneSight’s opticians, licensed doctors and eyewear industry professionals in Mamelodi’s Bophelong Community Center to hand-deliver prescription frames and non-prescription sunglasses along with top-quality eye care to the local community. OneSight, a Luxottica foundation, is dedicated to improving vision for those in need. The clinic was open from Sept. 21 – 30.
According to Cape Town University, Africa has the highest burden of blindness and visual impairment, 80% of which is avoidable. Poverty is the common denominator contributing to most of this blindness.
There are 1.1 million people who live in the township of Mamelodi. According to a local community health survey conducted by Engage Mamelodi, the number one health issue the community wanted addressed is vision care. Currently, there is only one optician and one ophthalmologist to support this community on an ongoing basis. “By leveraging all of its resources – from product and monetary donations to the participation of employee and athlete volunteers – Oakley aims to help OneSight improve access to vision care and sun protection for the 314 million people worldwide who suffer from poor vision” said Juliana Williams, Oakley Community Outreach. Steven ‘Chappy’ Adshade, Oakley South Africa’s Sales Director said, “The best experience was placing a new pair of glasses on their face and witnessing their smiles as they see for the first time. We’re making so many people feel really special.”
Oakley athletes that also volunteered in the clinic included Gretchen Bleiler (American Professional Halfpipe Snowboarder), Oscar Pistorius (South African Paralympian), Sifiso Nhlapo (South African Professional BMX Rider), Davey Weare (South African Professional Surfer), Burry Stander (South African Mountain Bike Champion), Graeme Smith (South African Cricketer & Captain), and Roxy Louw (South African Surfer), along with Liezel van der Westhuizen (South African Television Presenter & Host of M-Net’s Idols).
“It’s always fun to give back, especially doing so with a sponsor who shares in this vision. Handing the recipients their glasses has been so rewarding and I have loved being part of this experience,” said Sifiso Nhlapo.
Graeme Smith added, “I’ve been fortunate enough to do a lot for the communities throughout my career in South Africa, but it’s the first time I’ve ever done anything involving eyes. Seeing their faces when they see properly for the first time has kept a smile on my face all day. I’m grateful for the experience – thank you Oakley.”
Oscar Pistorious, commented, “Sight is something that I’ve taken for granted, especially when you see what a change it makes to the people who really need it. Thank you OneSight and Oakley for having me here.”