New eye clinic for Leeds homeless

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A new eyecare clinic especially tailored towards homeless people in Leeds will be launched later this month.

Charity St George’s Crypt will officially open the service on Monday, July 31 at their Great George Street base.

Vision Care for Homeless People (VCHP) Leeds is the eighth clinic of its kind to be opened in the UK.

Caroline Clarke, chairwoman of VCHP Leeds, said: “The optical community has come together to provide an excellent service.

“After a year of careful planning and fundraising, the clinic will be open each Monday.

“We aim to make a real difference to the lives of people who need it the most.”

The launch of the clinic will commence at 2.30pm on the day.

The service will then run each Monday from 10.30am until 3pm.

Paul Appleson, a local optometrist, is among the fundraisers who has made the new venture for the city a reality.

Paul recently ran the Leeds half marathon to raise funds for the clinic.

“A group of us want to do something to help the local homeless community,” recalled Paul, who runs his own practice in Wetherby.

“When the opportunity came up to use our professional skills it certainly solved the dilemma of how to help.

“To me, it felt like a very positive thing to become involved with.

“Leeds is a great city.

“But it also has some of the problems that a great city can have, too.”

The clinic has received donations from a number of local companies.

These include Specsavers, Rawdon Optical, Optoplast and the Charles and Elsie Sykes Trust.