Header-About NWLERC
navigation bar HIgh School Programs Satellite Operations Eyeglass donations Fundraising Contact NWLERC News & Updates Mission around the world Links

Executive Committee

Patricia Barron
Lacey Mid-Day

Past President

Jeannie Phillips
Gig Harbor

Vice President-Operations

Vice President-Admin

Vice President-Outreach
Ron Reierson
Tacoma Downtown

Sue Madsen

Lyell Clark
Lacey Sunrise

Recycling Manager

Volunteer Coordinator
Cliff Brandsma
Lacey Sunrise

Facilities Manager
Pat Bucknell
Lacey Sunrise

Mission Coordinators
Jean Cook
Community Volunteer
Berta Fender
Lacey Sunrise

Site Manager Training
Quality Assurance

Jack Ford

Lacey Sunrise

Quality Assurance/Training
Michael Petty
Oympia Host

Voice Program
Youth Volunteer Coord.

PZC Bill Miller

Lacey Sunrise

Homeless Outreach

Robert Pinson, O.D.
Lacey Sunrise

Web/Marketing Design
Ed Kane
Lakewood First

The Northwest Lions Eyeglass Recycling Center
NWLERC was founded by area Lions Clubs and is recognized by Lions Clubs International as an official Lions Eyeglass Recycling Center. It is a Washington State chartered, IRS authorized 501 (c) 3 corporation.

Our Mission
NWLERC was founded to provide used eyeglasses free of charge to people in remote areas of developing countries, delivered at the hands of volunteer eye care professionals. NWLERC is staffed entirely by volunteers.

Where does NWLERC get used eyeglasses?
Lions Clubs gather used eyeglasses by providing collection boxes where people can donate their no-longer-needed eyeglasses. Donation boxes are located throughout the community at eye care centers, businesses and workplaces of Lions members. Locations near you? Click Here

Processing the Donated Eyeglasses
Lions and other volunteers work at NWLERC evaluating, cleaning and cataloging donated eyeglasses. Glasses with broken or missing lenses or parts are discarded or salvaged. Gold and silver are extracted from frames containing those precious metals and the income is used to help defray the center's operating costs.
Lions clean the eyeglasses that get through the initial usability screening and then examine them with a lensometer to determine the prescription. They are then sealed in plastic bags with the prescription noted on each bag. Bagged glasses are packed into boxes according to prescriptions and stored until volunteer humanitarian groups need them.

Distribution of Eyeglasses
Eyeglasses collected, processed and packaged by NWLERC volunteer Lions are either used by the Center's humanitarian efforts or distributed to other humanitarian groups traveling to developing countries. These groups may include Lions traveling and operating as part of the Lions Sight First Program, Volunteer Optometric Services for Humanity (VOSH), World Vision, EyeCare WeCare Foundation, Optometry College Groups, Military Civil Assistance Groups, and numerous church groups. These groups are made up of eye doctors and other volunteers, many of whom are Lions.

How You Can Help NWLERC

  • Recycle your used eyeglasses, sunglasses and reading glasses. Donate them to any Lions Club member or contact a Lions Club in your area for the location of a drop-off box in your neighborhood. Click Here for locations & contacts.
  • Spread the word. Tell others about NWLERC and encourage them to donate their used eyeglasses. Talk to your friends and neighbors. Almost every household has old glasses that are just sitting in drawers because people just do not feel right about discarding them.
  • Volunteer. Talk with a Lions member and learn how you can join and help in this worthwhile cause. If you wish to volunteer at our NWLERC facility, please contact our Volunteer Coordinator.
  • Make a monetary donation. The NWLERC is funded through donations from Lions Clubs, businesses, and individuals. Please visit our Fundraising Activities page to learn more about making a donation.