Spring is almost here, and with spring comes spring cleaning. Learn how you can find a new home for the old prescription eyeglasses, reading glasses, and sunglasses taking up space in your drawers.
Doing some spring cleaning and have piles of stuff to donate or get rid of? If you have old eyeglasses lying around, don’t toss them; donate them instead. It’s estimated that there are about 2.5 billion people around the world who need glasses, but don’t have them, so your used glasses could be used to give sight to someone else.
Any glasses you donate should be in gently used, good-to-excellent condition — no broken frames or missing lenses. Unsure where to donate? Check out these resources.
Nationwide Locations That Accept Eyeglasses
Lions Club International’s Recycle for Sight Program — The Lions Club donates about 30 million pairs of glasses each year to developing countries, and it’s easy to find their collection boxes in libraries, community centers and other neighborhood locations. You can even volunteer at one of their eyeglass recycling centers to help with collection, processing and distribution. Find collection locations in your area here.
Goodwill — Goodwill partners with other nonprofits to provide low-income people with used eyeglasses. Find your local Goodwill here.
Walmart and Sam’s Club— Walmart Vision Centers partners with the Lions Club to collect eyewear. Look for the blue and white Lions Club donation box, or ask your local Walmart if it accepts donations. Find a vision center near you here.
Certain optical chains also accept donations. Call those in your area to find out which ones have recycling or donations programs for glasses.
Online Options for Mail-In Donations
New Eyes — This is a great mail-in option if you don’t have any drop-off locations near you. This not-for-profit organization accepts prescription eyeglasses, reading glasses and sunglasses for global distribution through aid organizations and medical missions.
Respectacle — This not-for-profit also accepts donated glasses by mail, which are then distributed to under-served communities. They also have some locations around the United States.
Tax Tips for Your Eyeglasses Donation
If you’d like to use your eyeglasses donation as a tax deduction, remember these tips:
- Only items donated to qualified charities will count towards a tax deduction. You can check for qualified organizations here.
- Be able to determine the fair market value, which the IRS defines as the price a willing buyer would pay. Since eyeglasses depreciate in value as soon as you start wearing them, you won’t get credit for the original price paid.
- Be sure to get a written receipt if the declared fair market value is $250 or more.
Ready to schedule an eye exam for a new prescription or want to check out the latest glasses frames? Contact us today.