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IFB Solutions opens Twenty200 Eyewear optical store in Winston-Salem

IFB Solutions opens Twenty200 Eyewear optical store in Winston-Salem
March 19
10:20 2020

IFB Solutions, a non-profit organization based in Winston-Salem and the largest employer of people who are blind or visually impaired in the country, has opened its Twenty200 Eyewear optical store at 631 Coliseum Drive NW in Winston-Salem. IFB had previously operated an optical store on its North Point Drive campus. Purchases from Twenty200 Eyewear help IFB create opportunities for people who are blind across its organization. 

“Our new location on Coliseum Drive will make Twenty200 Eyewear more accessible to the Winston-Salem community and generate greater awareness for our mission of creating opportunities for people who are blind,” said Nicole Ducouer, senior director of corporate communications for IFB Solutions. “Each purchase of eyeglasses, sunglasses or contact lenses from Twenty200 Eyewear helps create local opportunities for people who are blind.”

The Twenty200 Eyewear optical shop carries a wide range of popular eyewear brands including Ray-Ban, Costa, Hugo Boss, Kate Spade and Ana Hickmann. Staffed by licensed opticians, Twenty200 Eyewear is open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Most of the eyeglass orders are then fulfilled by IFB’s optical lab on its Winston-Salem campus. Additional information about Twenty200 Eyewear is available at www.twenty200.org

IFB Solutions operates an optical lab on its campus that supports the Twenty200 Eyewear optical shop as well as other commercial customers. The lab is staffed by individuals who are blind or visually impaired, using equipment that IFB has modified for use by individuals with limited sight, including magnified and high-contrast displays. 

The lab was built more than a decade ago to support IFB’s contracts with the Dept. of Veterans Affairs. At its peak, the lab produced more than 1,200 pairs of eyeglasses per day for veterans and their families, as well as for commercial customers. In late 2019, IFB was forced to scale back operations in its optical lab because of a court order giving priority for VA contracts to veteran-owned businesses over AbilityOne nonprofit agencies like IFB Solutions that employ people who are blind or have other significant disabilities. IFB is pursuing new commercial opportunities, including the move of its Winston-Salem location, which it hopes will generate more eyeglass orders. 

“Throughout IFB’s 84 years of serving people who are blind or visually impaired, the Winston-Salem community has been incredibly generous in supporting our mission through donations and grants, as well as by making purchases of our products,” said Ducouer. “We look forward to welcoming even more customers through the door at our new Coliseum Drive location and inviting them to be part of our mission through a purchase of eyewear or contacts.”

Twenty200 is a brand of IFB Solutions that offers a range of eyewear in approachable styles with a focus on kind, patient service. The Twenty200 name reflects the mission powering the brand: helping people see perfect 20/20 vision while proceeds create opportunities for people with legally blind, or with 20/200 or worse, vision. The Twenty200 Eyewear optical shop is located at 631 Coliseum Drive. For more information, visit twenty200.org

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