Sound Idea For Deaf Children Overseas

Wednesday, 04 February 2009

Specsavers hearing centres have announced a new fundraising partnership with UK charity Sound Seekers.

More than 300 stores will host fundraising activities and collect unwanted hearing aids for the charity. Sound Seekers will recycle the collected aids, taking them abroad to help improve the lives of deaf children in developing countries.

Richard Holmes, marketing director of Specsavers says: 'Sound Seekers provides essential support for children in countries where audiology services are scarce. Specsavers stores offer an ideal platform from which to request recycled hearing aids and host fundraising activities for the charity. We are delighted we can offer this level of support to such a worthwhile cause.'

The partnership follows the success of a similar scheme already in place with UK charity Vision Aid Overseas (VAO). Since 2003 a quarter of a million glasses have been collected and recycled by Specsavers optical stores for VAO for use in developing countries.

TV and radio presenter Clive Anderson has lent his support to the scheme. He says: 'The partnership between Specsavers and Sound Seekers is, in every sense, a great way to help deaf children in the developing world. I'm pleased to support it, and hope you can as well.'

Sound Seekers CEO Gary Williams says: 'In the countries we work in fewer than one in 40 people who could benefit from a hearing aid have one. Every single donated hearing aid counts, so we are very grateful to Specsavers for their support.'

Collection bins for donated hearing aids are now permanently located inside all Specsavers hearing centres. To drum up support for the partnership, Specsavers is offering every customer who donates their old aid to Sound Seekers and trades up to a new digital aid, a free cleaning and maintenance kit.

Known in full as Sound Seekers - The Commonwealth Society for the Deaf, the UK-registered charity works to improve the lives of deaf children and children suffering from ear disease in the developing countries of the Commonwealth by providing specialist equipment, training and support.

To book an appointment for a free hearing test at Specsavers hearing centres please visit

For further information on Sound Seekers, please visit



- Ends -

"The following are registered or unregistered trade marks of the Specsavers Group of Companies - The Specsavers Logo and Specsavers Opticians. All other Trade Marks are the property of their respective owners."

"©2008 Specsavers Hearcare Group Limited. All rights reserved."

Specsavers notes to editors                                               

  • Specsavers was founded by Doug and Dame Mary Perkins in 1984 and is now the largest privately owned opticians in the world
  • The couple still run the company, along with their three children. Their eldest son John is joint managing director
  • Specsavers has more than 1,060 stores throughout the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark, Spain and Australia
  • Annual turnover for the Specsavers Group is forecast to reach a record £1.05 billion for the financial year 2008/9
  • The group plans to continue its successful international expansion by opening stores in New Zealand
  • Specsavers optical stores and hearing centres are owned and run by joint venture or franchise partners.
  • Specsavers employs more than 26,000 staff
  • Specsavers was voted Britain's most trusted brand of opticians for the seventh year running by Reader's Digest in 2008
  • One in three people who wear glasses in the UK buy them from Specsavers Opticians - eight and a half million glasses were sold during 2007
  • Specsavers is the largest retail provider of home delivery contact lenses in Europe and one of the top two retail suppliers of continuous wear lenses in the world
  • Specsavers is now the largest retail dispenser of digital hearing aids in the UK and will offer a hearing service from more than 400 locations by the end of 2008
  • Specsavers supports numerous optical and hearing charities, including Diabetes UK, for whom they have raised more than £250,000 to fund research into diabetic retinopathy
  • Since 2003 a quarter of a million glasses have been collected and recycled by Specsavers stores for Vision Aid Overseas for use in developing countries