Santa Barbara Vision Care Program

Santa Barbara County, CA Residents Make an Appointment Today

Free eye exams and eyeglasses* are available for uninsured children and adults of all ages.

*There is a restricted selection of glasses available; SBVC covers either clear single vision or clear bifocals.

For more information or to schedule an appointment,
please contact us at the below information and
a program coordinator will be happy to help you. Se habla español.

Santa Barbara Vision Care Program
SEE International
(805) 963-3303

Yaneth Beltran, Director of SBVC
yaneth@seeintl.org

Ivette Fernandez, SBVC Coordinator
ivette@seeintl.org

SEE International has a deep commitment to helping low-income individuals in the Santa Barbara, CA area gain access to free eye care. Established in the 1980’s, the Santa Barbara Vision Care Program (SBVCP) provides uninsured local adults and children with free comprehensive eye exams, glasses, medicine, and essential eye surgeries for eye conditions such as cataracts and pterygium.

Eye clinics are held two to three days weekly and each day serves 10-15 uninsured individuals who would otherwise not have access to eye care. Through the generous efforts of participating doctors, we have increased the number of patients we serve from 1,247 in 2012 to over 2,500 in 2017.

The SBVCP also collaborates with the Shepard Eye Center in Santa Maria and the Kendall-Shepard Eye Center in Lompoc to serve residents in Santa Barbara North County.

We pride ourselves on our ability to serve some of the most vulnerable and underserved individuals locally and abroad. The Santa Barbara Vision Care Program addresses the issues of poverty and lack of healthcare for uninsured individuals in Santa Barbara County. People who cannot afford eye care are at great risk of vision impairment and eventual blindness.  The visually impaired, and their families, face many challenges: daily activities become difficult, prospects for employment are significantly lower, and a resulting lower economic productivity is often coupled with a loss of self-esteem.  For children, proper eyesight is essential to doing well in school.  Uneducated, sight-impaired children are likely to grow into uneducated, sight-impaired adults, and the cycle of economic hardship continues. SEE and the Santa Barbara Vision Care Program aim to break this cycle to empower adults and children with sight.

Those Who Make it Possible

The SBVCP could not exist without our volunteer ophthalmologists and their staff. As well as many organizations and corporations that supply the SBVCP with in-kind donations, enabling patients to receive the glasses and medications they otherwise could not afford.

SBVCP Clinic Staff:

  • Karen Garrety, OD
  • Michael Young, OD
  • Robin Chang, OD
  • Tom Funnell, OD

Volunteer Doctors:

  • Michael Paveloff, MD, FACS
    SBVC Committee Chair
  • Randall Goodman
    SBVC Committee
  • Ahmad Amir, MD
  • Robert Avery, MD
  • Mica Bergman, MD
  • Peter Brudner, OD
  • David S. Burroughs, MS, OD
  • Stephen Bylsma, MD
  • Alessandro Castellarin, M.D.
  • Stephen Couvillion, M.D.
  • Ryan J Fante, MD
  • James Franta, OD
  • Randall Goodman, MD, FACS
  • Douglas Jacobson, MD
  • Douglas Katsev, OD
  • Kenneth Kendall, OD
  • Bryant Lum, MD
  • William E McRee, MD
  • Craig Merrill, MD
  • Toni Meyers, MD
  • Tim Nelson, OD
  • Dante Pieramici, M.D.
  • Ragui W. Sedeek, MD
  • Daniel P. Shepard, MD
  • Mark Sherman, MD
  • Mark Silverberg, MD, FAAP, FAAO
  • Brett E. Simon, OD
  • Nathan Steinle, M.D.
  • Stuart Winthrop, MD, FACS
  • Rami Zarnegar. MD
  • Steven Zelko, MD

Veterans Week with SBVC

Calling all veterans! Please join us from November 9-13 in honor of Veterans Day. Santa Barbara Vision Care will be providing free eye exams and vouchers for glasses for vets.

Santa Barbara Vision Care Helps Essential Workers

We’re working hard to support our community in this changing world. We recently helped Rafael, an essential truck driver whose family income was cut in half due to the pandemic, by replacing his lost glasses. Click the button below to read the rest of the story and see how Santa Barbara Vision Care is helping essential workers, like Rafael, persevere through these difficult times.

SEE’s Response to COVID-19 Challenges

To learn more about what actions SEE International is taking during the current pandemic and a list of frequently asked questions, click the button below.

Meet Hortencia, The Hardest Working Grandma in Santa Barbara

Hortencia had been losing her vision to cataracts for six years. Her job as a housekeeper had become quite difficult, and it wasn’t safe for her to bike to work anymore. With tears in her eyes, she told us how she had been struggling to care for her children and grandchildren, for whom she is the sole caretaker.

The cost of surgery was too much for her even to consider as an option.

Thanks to your past support, this summer we were able to provide Hortencia free cataract surgery and restore the vision in both of her eyes. She is looking forward to so much, thanks to your support. Watch her emotional journey today!

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