86-year-old Verna drove herself from Yakima for an appointment at Legacy Hospital. She is disabled and has a vision impairment. Her metal frame glasses snapped at the bridge and she searched for help. How could she drive all the way home? Verna noticed a sign for the Oregon Lions and with persistence entered the not quite open for business lab, inquiring about help. Though we couldn’t grind her a new pair (at that time, not having all our lens inventory in stock), Katie and Kelly improvised. Kelly searched through recently donated batches of glasses destined for international mission trips to find a compatible women’s style metal frame to fit her lenses. Then Katie used their newly opened set of tools to secure the lenses and fit the frame to Verna’s liking. A perfect ending to a historical day at OLSHF! A week later Verna returned to our office to donate eight pairs of glasses! Thank you Verna!

LEAP Eyeglass Assistance

About The Program

Oregonians overwhelmingly call our Lions in Service Hotline to inquire about eye exams and glasses. Most experience uncorrected refractive error (or the inability by the eye to focus light), a highly common and correctable condition. The LEAP Optical Finishing Lab serves clubs in all MD-36 Districts. Our mission is to help Lions Keep the Promise by providing high quality, low-cost eyewear to serve those in need.

What will it offer Lions Clubs and Your Community?

LEAP targets eligible adults meeting income criteria in the Lions Multiple District – the entire state of Oregon and part of Northern California. Our goal is for the LEAP Lab to be a more economical choice for Lions Clubs to serve more people. The Lab enhances the promise Lions made to Helen Keller to serve as Knights of the Blind.

OLSHF is proud to announce an innovative and sustainable solution for the demand in correcting refractive error that is economical, realistic, and doesn’t overly burden Lions Clubs at the local level. Thanks to a generous grant by Lions Clubs International Foundation’s (LCIF) SightFirst grant, we have created an optical finishing lab at the Lions Foundation office on the Legacy Good Samaritan Hospital campus. By creating our own resource to make eyeglasses for LEAP, we increase our capacity to help Lions Clubs serve people in need.

Creating an optical lab at our current location takes LEAP to a whole new sustainable level. Our main partner, Legacy Health Systems, has donated space for a lab to grind lenses and assemble glasses as well as in-kind support for exams and follow-up care. By creating a finishing lab, we have consolidates LEAP fully and brought a new centralized structure to our statewide delivery system of providing eye exams and glasses to those in need.

How to Access This Program

Through our network of MD-36 Lions Clubs (Oregon and Northern California Lions clubs) we will receive referrals for glasses. A person will get their prescription through a local doctor with Lions’ assistance or through a referral to Legacy. Then our lab will make the glasses and ship to their location.

To access this program, applicants must call the Lions in Service line at (971) 270-0203 phone or e-mail their contact information and request to lionsclubsreferrals@olshf.org.

Lions volunteers will refer the above mentioned calls and e-mails to the appropriate club, who will then provide an application.