Give the Gift of Sight
Limited edition glasses by contemporary Aboriginal Artist Rheanna Lotter to raise funds to help end avoidable blindness for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
As part of their mutual goal to close the gap in eye health for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Australia, Specsavers and The Fred Hollows Foundation have again joined forces to launch two limited edition frames, this time featuring the artwork of contemporary Aboriginal artist Rheanna Lotter. Rheanna is a proud Yuin nation woman and her business Ngandabaa is where she creates and sells her artwork.
With $25 from each pair of glasses sold donated to The Foundation, each purchase ensures that more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples can access high quality eye care and eyewear. Aiming to raise $125,000 through the initiative, the limited edition range will be released exclusively online through Specsavers’ website from 5 November and in-store nationwide from 12 November.
Available in optical or prescription sunglasses styles, the artwork featured on the limited edition glasses entitled ‘Saltwater Dreamin’ is a story about sustainability.
“This painting shows our incredible waterways. We must always remember the importance of caring for them and it’s our job to ensure we maintain and sustain our environment for future generations,” artist Rheanna said.
“I’m very passionate about preservation, and that extends beyond the environment and is what drew me to this project. It’s been interesting to see my artwork translated onto glasses. Knowing that every pair will make a real difference in the Aboriginal community as well as raise awareness of Aboriginal Art and its importance in culture makes it a project I really wanted to be involved in. With the glasses coming out just in time for Christmas, I encourage everyone to give the gift of sight, whether it’s a gift to yourself or a loved one,” Rheanna added.
The Foundation’s Director of Program Implementation in Oceania which includes the Indigenous Australia Program, Jaki Adams-Barton, welcomed this latest project. “It’s essential that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples have access to good quality eye screening services and glasses,” Jaki said.
“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples are three times more likely to suffer vision loss or blindness than non-Indigenous Australians. At the moment, our mob are going blind simply because the health system is not meeting our eye health needs. The funds raised through the sale of these limited edition frames will go towards funding projects that will help provide eye care through Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations, to ensure access to high quality, culturally safe, patient centric eye care services.” Jaki added.
Specsavers Director of Optometry Ben Ashby said Specsavers has been a proud partner of The Fred Hollows Foundation since 2011 and to date has donated over $3.3 million to support their Indigenous Australia Program, with more than $300,000 raised from the sale of previous limited edition ranges.