Balak Drishti (Child Vision)
Problem: There are 950M people around the world with myopia who cannot afford a simple pair of glasses. Out of these 239M are children whose families cannot afford to buy simple pair of glasses for their children. Today, large number of frames are made out of plastic and the lenses are also made from plastic or polycarbonate. Our mission is to make good quality, durable, and attractive pediatric prescription glasses at a price of ~$10, given to the children within 10 minutes of their examination and the business model is to go from producer to consumer in one step, simplifying the supply chain..
The eyeglasses will be made out of sustainable/recyclable material materials like bamboo, Bioplastic, jute, denim, hemp, coconut, or coffee beans and appropriate natural binder to give the right compressive, torsional, and tensile strength. These will procured locally in the individual countries and using local labor, and using local/distributed manufacturing, and simplified supply chain. After they are used, the frames can technically be thrown in the garbage and mother earth will consume them without any side effects.
Traditionally, the lens were made out of glass and then they were changed to plastic and polycarbonate lenses because they are light, thin, high refractive index and are impact resistant, and shatter proof. In subsequent development, Balak Drishti will use glass lenses that meet or exceed the polycarbonate specifications allowing Balak Drishti to go back to glass lenses or using other biodegradable materials so the glasses can be completely biodegradable. Alternative is to create semi-finished lenses which are much thinner and often only weigh half as much, significantly reducing the amount of plastic required for each lens. It is possible to reuse the plastic left over after shaping the lens. Polycarbonate can be melted down and used for cast parts, whereas the granules of materials that cannot be melted down are employed in other industries. There are two parts to the offering:
Pediatric prescription glasses at a price of ~$10 (INR800) delivered within 10 minutes of their examination and made out of sustainable materials. The lenses will be edged, buffed, and polished using manual machines and snapped into the frames onsite. Balak Drishti will work with ecosystem partners to source the sustainable materials, lenses, and frames as well as lenses made of out glass, Bioplastic, or silica that meet or exceed the polycarbonates.
Delivery/Service: SaaS Platform: The business model is to go from producer to consumer in one step using the eye doctor/ophthalmologist as the channel. This secure AI platform will pull together the material resources providers (screening equipment vendors for Phoropters, Autorefractors, Lensometers etc.) and frames/lens manufacturers), microfinancers to connect to the end user using the enablers such as parents, schools, teachers, headmasters, NGOs, social workers, and micro-financing institutions through a single platform architecture/delivery channel of ophthalmologists, eye doctors, NGOs, technicians, and other eye care professionals to deliver the services.
Impact: 950M people worldwide will be able live productives lives and become good citizens.