L’OCCITANE has been caring for sight for more than 20 years, supporting projects and initiatives to combat avoidable blindness. In 2015, the brand and its Foundation set the goal of reaching 10 million eye care beneficiaries by 2020.
Now, L’OCCITANE and its Foundation have set a new ambitious goal:to reach 15 million eye care beneficiaries worldwide by 2025.
There are currently 1,1 billion people in the world who are blind or visually impaired and at least 1 billion more need on-going access to eye care services. However, 90% of vision loss cases are preventable.
According to the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness, 90% of those with a visual impairment live in low- and middle-income countries. This is due to these countries having limited access to high-quality eye care services (screenings, eyeglasses, treatments, eye surgeries, but also purchase of equipment and training of health professionals).
In 2050, vision loss is likely to affect 1.7 billion and more than half the global population will certainly need regular access to eye care services to optimize their vision.
At L'OCCITANE, we want to live in a world where everyone can see and experience the beauty that nature has to offer. That's why Caring For Sight is one of L'OCCITANE's six commitments and plays a central role in everything we do. In 1997, we began using Braille on our products, and we are proud to continue doing so today. Every year since 2000, L'OCCITANE has sold a new solidarity product to raise funds to help our partners fight avoidable blindness around the world. In 2006, the L'OCCITANE Foundation was born, with Caring For Sight as its priority action. Thanks to the L'OCCITANE Foundation and its partners, such as UNICEF, we have reached our 10by20 goal in 2020 and are able to set a new one for 2025.
UNICEF, a major international partner
In 2017, L’OCCITANE and its Foundation embarked on a major international partnership with UNICEF. This three-year partnership guaranteed a minimum of one million euros a year and has helped in the prevention of childhood blindness of more than 5,5 million children in Bolivia, Myanmar, and Papua New Guinea (and in Niger). This has been done by developing vitamin A supplementation programmes: an essential vitamin for children’s immune systems. In 2020, L'OCCITANE and its Foundation renewed this partnership with UNICEF for another three years and extended it across the world to improve the prevention of childhood blindness of more than 3 million new children.
The Foundation's partners in Burkina Faso
The Foundation has been supporting projects fighting avoidable blindness in Burkina Faso for years. The L’OCCITANE Foundation supports the work of Light for the World, Hellen Keller International, Asmae (Association Soeur Emmanuelle) and Sightsavers, four organizations working hard to fight avoidable blindness.
Thanks to our partnership with Light for the World, we support better access to quality eye care, health care workers are gaining and strengthening their skills and we increase health centers’ capacity by purchasing adequate equipment, for instance. The collaborations with Hellen Keller International and Asmae offer blindness prevention care to children respectively in the regions of the Central Plateau and the center of the country. With Sightsavers, our ambition is to help eliminate two blinding diseases in the Cascades Region.
L'OCCITANE subsidiaries' local partners
Company subsidiaries also play a crucial role in achieving this goal. Every year, they are involved in over thirty projects in partnership with charities in the countries where they are based. These projects combatting avoidable blindness and historically co-financed both by the subsidiaries and by the L’OCCITANE Foundation are now exclusively financed by the subsidiaries, which thus maintain a privileged relationship with their local partners.
Finally, to involve consumers in its charitable activity, L’OCCITANE en Provence has brought out a charity product every year since 2000, with profits* going towards combatting avoidable blindness. Over 421,896 euros were raised through sales of 2020 and 2021’s charity soap.
*In-store retail price, excluding taxes and the costs of transportation and production