Last week the House of Lords hosted a reception for Vision Care for Homeless People with the purpose of highlighting the valuable support that the charity provides to the homeless in the UK.

Speaking to the peers, MPs and optical industry guests present, Patron Lord Filkin, CBE, said: 'There is an increasing problem with the number of homeless people in the UK, the majority of whom have no access to ophthalmic services, and we have found it possible to create a low cost, low overhead service to fill the gaps in the health service.'

Since its inception in 2003, Vision Care for Homeless People has dispensed over 5,000 spectacles free of charge to homeless and other vulnerable people and today offers free eye tests at three clinics in London and one in Birmingham.

'We are well on the way to opening a fifth clinic in Brighton this summer and have plans for another regional centre this year,' commented Harrinder Paul, chief executive of Vision Care for Homeless People. 'We are also extending the opening times of the existing clinics and our vision is to have a centre in every city in the UK where there is a need.'

To find out more about volunteering or supporting the charity contact: will.pearce@vchp.org.uk or visit www.visioncarecharity.org