In 2002, my aunt, Winkie La Force, was preparing for a mission trip to the rural region of Ghana, a village called Kubugu. We sought to fill the cracks of her suitcase with items that were easily acquirable in the states but would serve to be invaluable for the villagers that she was serving. It was the simple gift of reading glasses that had the most immediate impact for these villagers because many of the inhabitants had partial vision as a result of aging. For less than one $1, a pair of reading glasses was able to restore the ability to read or complete working tasks for these individuals. Inspired by the direct impact of such a simple purchase, I began to raise money and awareness for this optical need prior to each of Winkie's subsequent trips to Africa. Since then she has delivered glasses to rural areas of Uganda, slums of Nairobi and other communities in Ghana. After deliveries to other developing countries via other mission groups, Mission Vision became incorporated as a non-profit, and in the summer of 2009, we received 501(c)(3) status from the IRS, which has allowed for all donations to be tax-deductible.

With the help of fellow “Visionary,” Quin Patton, I spent the summer of 2009 in Central America delivering reading glasses to medical centers and providing optical exams for the inhabitants of these remote villages. Made possible by grants and scholarships from Davidson College, this trip inspired our team to continue the reading glasses mission. In that summer alone, Mission Vision reading glasses were delivered to more than ten countries. Following graduation in 2010, we spent two months travelling South America to meet with the National Institutes of Ophtamologies and to provide optical clinics, delivering more than 1,000 glasses.

In June 2010, following a fundraiser with the support of F.C. Barcelona, I had the opportunity to partner with Rotary International to travel to Morocco to provide reading glasses. As we continue to grow, we are seeking new partnerships and support to help us reach more communities that wouldn’t have access reading glasses.

Mission Vision is an entirely student-run organization and has now spread to many other campuses outside of Davidson College. We are passionate about making a difference for less fortunate individuals everywhere, and for every dollar we collect one pair of reading glasses will be purchased and delivered to a needy recipient. Vision loss sees no borders, and Mission Vision will remain dedicated to helping to restore vision throughout the world.

David Warren
founder and director

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Mission Vision
69 Sparwheel Lane
Hilton Head Island, SC 29926
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