2 Aug 2006

Australians donate glasses to Solomons

2:06 pm on 2 August 2006

An Australian police officer serving with the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands has organised a successful collection campaign in his home state to collect more than 800 pairs of glasses for children and adults in the Solomons

The idea came to Jeff Willoughby after he lost his reading glasses and learned how difficult it was to obtain prescription glasses in the Solomons.

With the help of contacts at the West Australian newspaper, WA Police and the town of Bunbury, he persuaded people to donate their old glasses to the National Referral Hospital in Honiara.

Dr Deji Adu from the hospital's eye department says the Solomons has a shortage of prescription glasses due to their high price and the fact that only limited pairs are available.

He says children usually do not have their eyes tested until they are in their late teenage years and sometimes their lives are affected by poor eyesight for many years.