The William H. Hannon Foundation announced a $10,000 donation to Vision to Learn, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing free eye exams and vision care for students around the country.

This year's donation follows a 2018 grant that helped provide eye exams and glasses at four schools in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles: Assumption, Holy Name of Jesus, St. Columbkille and St. Odilia. 132 students were given on-site eye exams at the schools and 113 were provided glasses at no cost.

According to Vision to Learn, nearly 2 million students nationwide struggle to see the chalkboards in their classroom, read their textbooks, and participate in their classes. In Los Angeles County alone, there are nearly 126,000 students who can’t afford the eye exams or glasses they need. 

“As a former schoolteacher, and as a parent and grandparent, I know how important it is for children to be able to not only see in the classroom but experience the beauty of the outdoors," said Kathleen Hannon Aikenhead, president of the William H. Hannon Foundation.

"80% of learning during a child’s first 12 years is visual. Vision To Learn is providing a hugely important service and is doing so with an innovative approach to bringing eye exams and glasses directly to schools in underserved communities. We especially appreciate their focus on utilizing our donation to help students in our local Catholic schools.” 

The William H. Hannon Foundation noted in a Nov. 4 press release that it was the first private foundation to support Vision to Learn, and has been an annual supporter. 

Based in Santa Monica, California, the William H. Hannon Foundation was founded in 1983 by the late Catholic philanthropist and real estate developer William H. Hannon.