Minnesota Lions Vision Foundation Sight Program

The Minnesota Lions Vision Foundation supports the University of Minnesota through their Lions Sight Program. The Sight Program partnership began in 1960 when Minnesota Lions established the Minnesota Lions Eye Bank in conjunction with the Department of Ophthalmology. Work with the Department of Ophthalmology expanded over the years, and to–date the Lions have donated more than $18 million to University vision programs.

The Lions Sight Program at the University of Minnesota includes:

Minnesota Lions Eye Bank, now Lions Gift of Sight dedicated to recovering, processing, and distributing donated eye tissue for use in sight-saving corneal transplants, vision-enhancing surgery, research, and education. Lions Gift of Sight is one of the most successful eye banks in the country, and more than 29,000 people have received the gift of sight with donated eye tissue provided through the eye bank.

Lions Children’s Eye Clinic, established in 1969, where more than 8,000 children are seen every year. The clinic is the second largest and best–staffed clinic of its kind in the country.

Ophthalmology Research at the Lions Research Building. The University of Minnesota Lions Research Building, which opened its doors in 1993, includes state–of–the–art laboratories where investigators from the departments of ophthalmology, otolaryngology, and neurology collaborate with other University departments on research projects.

Minnesota Lions Macular Degeneration Research and Rehabilitation Center (The MAC), established in 1998. The MAC researches and treats macular degeneration, a disease that affects the central vision. Macular degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in the United States. The MAC brings together the expertise of physicians, the research of various departments around the University, and the knowledge of those in the medical technology industry. It is a powerful collaboration of resources dedicated to fighting macular degeneration.

Minnesota Lions Eye Surgery Center. Created in 2010, Minnesota Lions Eye Surgery Center supports infant and children’s eye research, education, and care at the Department of Ophthalmology in the University of Minnesota Medical School. The goal of the organization is to give every child a lifetime of sight.

Download the Lions Sight Program Fact Sheet (PDF)

Click to learn more about our other current projects:

Used Eyeglass Program

Surgery Center

Helen Keller Award