Q. I am a veteran, and I was diagnosed with cancer in 2011. I am not working and I need assistance to help me pay for new glasses. I have applied for disability and was denied, but I am appealing the decision. Can you point me to an organizations that may help me?

A.

If you have not already done so, please check with the Veterans Administration (VA). Veterans who meet specific VA criteria have access to vision and hearing exams in addition to free eyeglasses and hearing aids. Veterans with any compensable service-connected disability, former POWs, Purple Heart recipients, and certain housebound veterans are among those who qualify.

If you do not qualify for assistance through the VA, the Non Commissioned Officers Association (NCOA) has an EyeMed Vision Care Program which is a discount program and does have a membership fee.

You might also check with your local Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion to ask if they sponsor any eye care programs to help fellow veterans.

Finally, there are community service organizations whose mission is to give back to the community in particular ways.

  • Lions Clubs International provides financial assistance to individuals for eye care through local clubs. There are Lions Clubs in most localities, and services vary from club to club. Check your telephone book for the telephone number and address of your local organization.

  • New Eyes for the Needy provides vouchers for the purchase of new prescription eyeglasses. Eligibility guidelines apply.

For other possible resources, please read CancerCare’s fact sheet, Finding Resources in Your Community.