New Partner Joins Providence Health Care in Bi-Annual Event for Downtown Eastside Residents

Vancouver, BC — Providence In the Park, the popular bi-annual community event for the homeless, has an exciting new community partner to further address the care needs of vulnerable populations.

Clearly Contacts – the largest online eyewear retailer in Canada – has joined with Providence Health Care and will be offering free sight tests and reading glasses to visitors at Oppenheimer Park in the Downtown Eastside on Saturday, October 29th. The eyewear service is part of Cleary Contacts’ “Change the View Project” and is a welcome addition to the nutritional lunches, warm drinks, clothing, blankets, toiletries, and haircuts that Providence provides with the help of volunteers and community partners at the event.

“This event demonstrates the strong sense of spirit that binds together the staff, physicians, researchers and volunteers of Providence Health Care in providing care to and respecting the diversity, dignity & interdependence of all persons,” says Dianne Doyle, President & CEO, Providence Health Care. “Our success in providing exceptional care has always been enabled by the numerous community partners we’ve had in addressing the needs of our patients, residents and communities. The partnership with Clearly Contacts builds on that tradition.”

Clearly Contacts’ “Change the View Project” has a goal of donating a free pair of eyeglasses for each pair of its own exclusive brands of eyeglasses sold. Initiatives undertaken by the company so far have resulted in thousands of eyeglasses being distributed in Canada and around the world to individuals who would not normally have access to, or be able to afford, vision correction.

“We are delighted to participate in the Providence in the Park event,” stated Riana Zietsman,”Change the View” coordinator. “Our mission is to make eyewear more accessible and being able to assist the homeless by improving their vision is an important element of that objective.”

On Saturday, October 29th, staff, physicians, and volunteers from across Providence Health Care will gather at Oppenheimer Park, at the corner of Cordova and Dunlevy, from 11am to 1 pm to distribute provisions which have been kindly donated by community partners including Sodexo, Tzu Chi Foundation, Tim Hortons, Kennedy Office Moving Services, Teekay Corporation, Value Village and Clearly Contacts.

This is the eighth year that PHC has come to Oppenheimer Park to help, with the support of the Tapestry Foundation for Healthcare and St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation. Those who are unable to volunteer their time show their generosity of spirit by donating clothes & toiletries or make monetary donations towards the event. Many attendees to this highly anticipated event are homeless or poor families in need of food and care.

“It is our hope that one day each resident of the Downtown Eastside will have the food, clothing and shelter they need”, says Thomas Salley, Director, Mission Services, Providence Health Care. “Until that day, Providence will continue to support these members of our community through the generosity and compassion of our staff, volunteers, their families, and our sponsors.”

Providence's faith-based, values-driven approach to innovative care and research excellence results in leadership and success in addressing the complex care issues of some of the most vulnerable and voiceless members of society including those with addictions, mental health, homeless, HIV/AIDS, cardio-pulmonary, renal and aging issues and conditions. We take pride in serving people who have been marginalized for any reason and play a strong role in caring for the socially disadvantaged, serving medically/socially complex populations (HIV positive, substance abuse or substance dependent patients and patients with no fixed address).


Jennifer Laidlaw
Communications Specialist, Providence Health Care
Office: 604-806-8350
Cell: 778-227-2406
Pager: 604-686-9983

Terry Vanderkruyk
Vice President, Corporate Development
Coastal Contacts Inc.
Phone: 604.676.4498