Bartell's donates eyeglasses to developing countries


SEATTLE — A regional retail pharmacy chain is donating nearly 20,000 pairs of eyeglasses to poor communities around the world.

Bartell Drugs, which operates 58 stores in the Seattle metropolitan area, is donating more than 19,500 pairs of glasses to Medical Teams International, which will distribute them to impoverished communities in Africa, Central America, Southeast Asia, Central Asia and the Balkans. The glasses are from the retail pharmacy chain's back product inventory and will be donated instead of being returned to Foster Grant, the eyewear manufacturer with which Bartell's has a long-standing vendor relationship.

"We are committed to providing care for people who struggle as a result of poverty, conflict and disaster," Medical Teams International CEO Jeff Pinneo said. "The struggle to see clearly is often one more roadblock on the path to a healthy, self-sufficient life. That's we are enormously grateful for the generosity of Bartell Drugs and their contribution of eyeglasses. This gift will not only improve sight, but improve the lives of people in need in some of the most distressed regions in the world."


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