When you think about recycling; pop cans, cardboard, and paper are probably the first things that come to mind. Believe it or not, eyeglasses can be recycled too.
In the United States it's recommended you get your eyes checked on a yearly basis. According to Dr. Russell Dressen, if your prescription stays the same your glasses can be used forever, however, people's eyes change quite frequently. Nicki Harle has worn glasses for several years now.
"I remember years back, I heard about the Lions Club collecting glasses, and as mine became out dated I started giving them away," said Harle.
Dr. Dressen's office is one of several places people can drop off their old glasses. Which will eventually be used overseas. Hal Griffin is a member of the Cactus Lions Club in Abilene.
"Last year we shipped out of Midland some 6,000,000 pairs of glasses. So there's a lot of glasses that get shipped from the Lions to countries that need them," explained Griffin.
Dr. Dressen is a third generation eye doctor in Abilene. And like his father he's happy to help out.
"They come in and they see our sign out front and say that's what I can do with my old glasses," said Dr. Dressen.
Harle went through about four pairs of glasses before she saw other options.
"What did you do before that? They usually sat in the drawer," said Harle.
And Harle's not the only one. So why not put old glasses to use. In Abilene we collect around 100 pairs on an annual basis.
"Every year seems to be just a little bit better," mentioned Griffin.
Just furthering the goal.
"To get every pair of glasses that is no longer being used, to be turned in so we can recycle them and give somebody the ability to see," added Griffin.
Giving the gift of sight to those around the world.