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SOLO Eyewear Blog

Blind Stokers Club

Imagine riding a tandem bicycle with your eyes closed and having to trust the person in the seat in front of you. Well for Solana Beach resident, Carol Corcoran this story is nothing but reality. Corcoran lost her sight to a genetic disorder and is a member of the Blind Stokers Club, which is a long distance tandem bicycling club that pair’s avid seeing tandem bicycle riders with rear blind tandem bicycle riders. Read more about the Blind Stokers Club here!

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Improving Vision

SOLO Eyewear has reached a huge milestone this summer by restoring vision to more than 6,540 people. We owe every bit of this remarkable accomplishment to you, our supporters. Thank you for believing in us, and spreading the word about our Vision to Give. Our goal this year is to restore vision for 12,000 people, and we can only get there with your continued support. Learn more about our Vision to Give!

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#SOLOGOINGPOLO Recap

SOLO Eyewear would like to give a huge thank you to everyone who took part in our awesome summer launch party at the W Rooftop over the weekend! It was a great success! First off, we're happy to announce that we have restored vision for 6,540 people around the world. This is such an amazing accomplishment for us and we owe every bit of this wonderful accomplishment to you, our supporters! Thank you for believing in us, rocking SOLOs and spreading the word. Our goal for this year is to restore vision for 12,000 people in need. With your continued support, we'll definitely get there!

We would also like to mention that SOLO Eyewear now carries polarized sunglasses!! Woo hoo!! Check out the polarized option when purchasing your SOLOs online. As you may know, polarized lenses reduce glare from reflective surfaces and subsequently prevent eye strain. Protect your eyeballs with a pair of our polarized sunglasses!

Check out some of the photos from our party!

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Round Two for Random Acts of Kindness!

Greeting 2013 with open arms, we are hosting another Random Acts of Kindness scavenger hunt on SDSU’s campus from 8 am to 6 pm on April 25th! Click here to find out more about the event: https://www.facebook.com/events/528838717167119/

Here’s your opportunity to give back to the wonderful community we live in and brighten the lives of many along the way. Whether it be high-fiving people as they walk by or paying for their Starbucks, we guarantee you will make someone smile. It’s not as hard as it sounds to make someone’s day (or even week), and that is the message we are trying to spread here at SOLO. A little goes a long way and we need your help to prove it! Below are some event photos from our 2012 scavenger hunt, be sure to check it out. Hope to see you there!

Well Hello There, 2013!

Because of you, we were able to end 2012 with a bang and start 2013 with an even bigger one. We're stoked to fill you in with a few instances of awesomeness that have occurred over the past few months… 

FUN FEATURES!

We had the privilege of being featured in several magazines, blogs and TV shows over the past few months, including: 
Rue La La, The
Hostel Life, Fashion 5.0., San Diego Magazine, Foam Magazine, San Diego KUSI, Standard Magazine and the TODAY Show!!! We feel so blessed to have the support of local and national publications, bloggers and TV Shows. Thank you!! We have to give our  friends at Roozt.com a special shout out for lining up the TODAY Show feature for us! It was such an honor to be recognized by such a prominent, national TV Show that reaches upwards of four million viewers on a daily basis. We can’t even begin to tell you guys how pumped we are to be spreading the word about our mission to further our vision to give! 

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


ACTS OF KINDNESS SCAVENGER HUNT

We had the opportunity to host our first annual Acts of Kindness Scavenger Hunt on November 10, 2012. We pumped gas and cleaned windshields for strangers, carried groceries, picked up trash on the beach, gave free hugs and high-fives, bought coffee for strangers, gave people in need the shirts off our backs, greeted people with inspirational signs and words of encouragement, and so much more. Thanks to a great turnout of friends, family and supporters alike; it was an incredible success and a lot of fun too! And whenever you get a chance, make sure to check out our video about the benefits of Acts of Kindness!

Finally, thanks to the attention and appreciation our fans have shown, we have been able to make some splashes in the retail world. We are now available in the following retail locations:

Southern California

Graffiti Beach
Razzmatazz
Eyes on Fifth

La Jolla Bamboo Boutique
Specs Optometry

India Yoga
Hunt and Gather

Mission Playground
Bamboo 2u and Tikis Too

SportRx

Arizona

Yoga Shala

New York

Pasteurized Tees

Canada

Wesbrook Eye Care

Thanks again for joining us on this journey! We couldn’t do it without your support! Stay posted.

Summer Collection Arriving Soon!

JULY 2012 marks a very important and long awaited time for SOLO Eyewear.  After months and months of tweaking, designing and researching, drinking crazy amounts of caffeine, meeting with industry pros, long nights huddled around our laptops and gaining awesome support on Kickstarter, SOLO will finally receive the Summer 2012 Collection…. Sound the trumpets, cue the Rocky theme song!  These bad boys are coming….

Mark your calendars!  The Delivery date is set…. SOLOs will be here in JULY 2012 and we CAN’T WAIT! Through Kickstarter and hosting pre-orders on our website, we have gained supporters from all over the world.  We are unbelievably excited and feeling incredibly blessed to receive such support.  The SOLO Summer Collection is on the path to becoming an international hit! Woo Hoo! Our Vision to Give will soon reach a whole new level and we owe it all to YOU.  Thank You!

To top it all off, SOLO Eyewear will be featured on The Doctor's talk show on May 31st! HOLY MOLY, we are so excited! Check out this preview:


Aravind Eye Hospital


On Thursday, January 19th we hopped in the car and traveled 3 hours from Chennai to Pondicherry. After months of correspondence, we were going to meet Dr. Venkatesh, Chief Medical Officer, and his fellow staff at Aravind Eye Care System. “Founded in 1976 by Dr. G. Venkataswamy, a man known to most as Dr. V., Aravind Eye Hospital started as an eleven bed hospital manned by 4 medical officers. Dr. V. saw the potential for what Aravind is today, one of the largest facilities in the world for eye care. Over the years, this organization has evolved into a sophisticated system dedicated to compassionate service for sight. The Aravind Eye Care System now serves as a model, for India, and the rest of the world.” We were excited to meet the staff behind such an impressive organization.

We arrived at Aravind, a huge campus of buildings. The scenery was beautiful, at least we thought so. After talking with staff, we learned that a cyclone had passed through a week prior and uprooted most of their trees and destroyed their gardens and vegetation. Their employees had spent significant time cleaning up the debris left from the storm. We learned that Aravind Eye Hospital is a self-sustaining community. All water is recycled and filtered on-site, gardens located throughout the property provide fruit and vegetables for all of their meals, and all of the physicians and nurses live in apartments less than one block from the main hospital.

After walking through the entrance and down one of the main corridors, we met Mr. Poobalan, Administration Manager. He sat with us and told us about his experience with Dr. V. Mr. Poobalan had the opportunity to work with Dr. V for a few years before his death. In that short time, it was clear that Dr. V’s impression on Mr. Poobalan was not only a lasting one but completely life changing. Mr. Poobalan stated, “Dr. V was a hard working man of principle. His hands were disfigured from arthritis but that never slowed him in his work. Dr. V was a highly regarded man; he made everyone feel special. If you were to schedule a meeting with him, by the time you sat down with him Dr. V would know your entire life story. He would have researched you and found out as much about you as possible. After seeing his dedication to work, I was inspired to do the same. I left retirement and dedicated the rest of my life to helping others through my work here at Aravind.”

Priya walked into the room. A young lady with a bright smile, she informed us that she would be our tour guide. We started the tour by watching a short documentary on Aravind. About half way through, Priya turned off the documentary and informed us that Dr. Venkatesh had just called and requested that we join him in the Operating Room. Craig and I looked at each other and smiled… we weren’t expecting to have the opportunity to go into an operating room…this is going to be cool!

We walked through the long hallways and ventured upstairs where all of the operating rooms were. We changed into scrubs and flip flops and entered the OR to see our first cataract surgery. Dr. Venkatesh had joined us and was giving us a step by step play of what we were about to see. Two patients were lying on tables with blankets covering their bodies. The ophthalmologist was operating on the first patient’s cataract. Her eye was displayed on the monitor in the operating room. We were able to watch every step of the cataract surgery… 7 minutes later, the ophthalmologist was done and she had begun operating on the other patient. Right after finishing the first cataract surgery, the nurses sat the patient up and walked her out of the room. I was amazed. Dr. Venkatesh walked over and picked up the cup that was holding the cataract. He asked me to touch it. I did and was amazed at the size and consistency. The cataract was like a small, oddly-shaped rock. Apparently, this one was quite mature which is why it required 7 minutes to be removed. Typically, Aravind physicians can perform cataract surgeries in less than 5 minutes. We were amazed.

We finished touring the other operating rooms, watching cataract surgeries and learning about the process of delivering high quality care to a high volume of patients. For the next 2 hours, we toured the campus, seeing hundreds of patients coming and going. We then joined the staff for lunch in their guest house. We learned about their daily routines, their passion for providing eye care and their dedication to Aravind. Each physician at the table worked a minimum of 6 days a week. They told us about their training efforts to teach physicians around the world about the Aravind model. The physicians frequently traveled to satellite hospitals in Africa. They shared their experiences with us and we sat there like sponges….absorbing every piece of information that flowed through their mouths. After eating and having great conversation, it was time to travel to the primary care center 45 minutes away in a nearby village.

Upon arriving, we were greeted by the 2 staff members at the center. It was a tiny room tucked away in a building. Pigs and cattle were roaming around outside. Patients were slowly walking in and out of this small, 10’ by 10’ eye care center. We conversed with the staff, inquired about their services, protocol for treating patients with various needs and their training with Aravind. We walked into the eye exam room and found a computer set up with a webcam…. Telemedicine? No way! In the middle of a rural village in India, inside of a tiny eye exam room, medical staff were taking advantage of up and coming technology to deliver more efficient health care to their patients. Awesome. Aravind is truly dedicated to its mission.

Craig and I left with a whole new level of confidence in the impact SOLO will have in the lives of others… we had formed partnerships with two amazing organizations – L.V. Prasad Eye Institute and Aravind Eye Care System. Our Vision to Give had just begun.