The VerBien (See Well) project gives school children in Mexico the opportunity to wear spectacles, ensuring they can see better, succeed in school and benefit from the opportunities a good education can give them.

In a collaboration involving Behar, the Mexican optical firm Augen and the Mexican government, free eye exams and spectacles are now offered in schools in Mexico with VerBien.

Children can select and customise their own frames, with the two-part frame construction and design. A plastic with hyper-flexible properties makes the glasses durable and robust.

More than 100,000 glasses have been distributed already throughout Mexico, and 400,000 are expected to be distributed each year.

“The whole program for a child to get a pair of glasses - with the eye exam, the making of custom lenses, custom frames, the assembly, putting them in a carry-box and shipping to the child costs only $10! So it is pretty obvious for the Mexican government to invest that little in their student population and this way to secure the children an education, a better self-helped future and increased job opportunities,” says Yves Behar.

The glasses can be adjusted in the field and interchangeable nose pads let children with different sized faces wear the glasses comfortably.

All states of Mexico are expected to receive 400,000 pairs each year and an extension of the program called See Well to Learn, is now starting in the San Francisco Bay Area. www.designtoimprovelife.dk

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