LONG BEACH – Vision To Learn, the LA Clippers Foundation, and the Long Beach Unified School District announced an effort to provide free glasses to every child in need, K-12, in LBUSD.
“Vision To Learn is delighted to expand its partnership with the LA Clippers Foundation as we work toward our goal of providing glasses to every child who needs them,” said Vision To Learn Founder and Chair Austin Beutner. “Whether it’s helping a child to read a book, see a math problem correctly, or catch a ball, glasses will help every child succeed in school and in life.”
The LA Clippers Foundation is supporting the project, which will visit every school in Long Beach Unified School District from now through the end of 2017, serving an estimated 5,000 additional students. Long Beach Unified School District, serving 82,000 kids, will become the largest school district in the nation to solve this problem. This is the second large community served by Vision To Learn with the Clippers’ support; in 2016 the Foundation supported a project serving every student in need throughout Inglewood.
“We are honored to continue this critical partnership and have the opportunity to provide much-needed vision care for thousands of students across our community,” said LA Clippers President Gillian Zucker. “By providing glasses to students in need, the LA Clippers Foundation hopes to create a better future for every child.”
Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia and Long Beach Unified School Superintendent Christopher J. Steinhauser were on hand for the event, held at Washington Middle School, where 58 students received free glasses from the program.
Mayor Garcia said, “As someone who has worn glasses my whole life, I’m thrilled that we will be able to provide a pair of glasses to every child who needs one in our schools. A huge thanks to Vision To Learn and the LA Clippers.”
Superintendent Steinhauser said, “Vision To Learn has been visiting Long Beach elementary schools since 2014. The program is very popular with kids, teachers and principals. Expanding this program to serve the entire school district will mean a big leg up for our students in need.”
Vision To Learn overcomes obstacles to care by serving students in schools with its mobile clinics. Through the program, students receive a basic vision screening. If a student does not pass the initial screening, he or she will receive a vision exam from an eye care professional. Glasses are then provided for those who need them, at no cost to kids or their families.
LONG BEACH WILL BECOME THE LARGEST SCHOOL DISTRICT IN THE COUNTRY TO SOLVE THIS PROBLEM
Since Vision To Learn began helping children in Long Beach in September 2014, over 2,200 children in the school district have been provided eye exams—and more than 1,600 of those have been provided with glasses, free of charge. This collaboration with the LA Clippers Foundation will allow Vision To Learn to serve the additional 4,000 students in Long Beach Unified School District who need glasses and still do not have them. This effort will be the largest undertaking of its kind in the nation, reaching thousands more unserved children and can become a model for other cities and districts.