The Rocky Mountain Lions Eye Bank was founded by the Lions of Colorado and Wyoming in 1982. RMLEB's mission is to fulfill the wishes of eye donors and their families to help another overcome blindness through transplantation and research. Our dedication to this mission allows nearly 2,500 eye, organ and tissue donors in Colorado and Wyoming to provide for thousands of sight-restorative transplants each year.
Once recovered and evaluated, donated eye tissues are first placed with recipients on a local transplant waiting list. If a suitable recipient is not found locally, we reach out to other eye banks in the United States. If a suitable recipient still cannot be found, we reach out to our international networks to find a recipient in other parts of the world. This way all viable corneas are transplanted. Tissues not suitable for transplant for medical reasons can often be placed in research programs.
The International Surgery Fund defrays costs associated with international tissue placement. This can include increased shipping fees, additional testing, and a lower cost reimbursement. This fund ensures eye tissues that cannot be placed with recipients in the United States are still transplanted. The fund also supports humanitarian missions of local transplant surgeons who give of their time and skills in developing countries. As part of addressing the worldwide need, the Rocky Mountain Lions Eye Bank has also helped establish eye banking practices and donation programs throughout the world.
The eye bank brings eye, organ, and tissue donation education to a variety of audiences we rely on to fulfill our mission. These include coroners, medical examiners, funeral service professionals, hospices and hospitals. RMLEB also spreads the donation message through awareness campaigns and public events. To learn more or to schedule a presentation at your place of business or school, please email us.
The Eye Surgery Grant was established in 1983. It exists to assist patients without the financial means to cover medically necessary eye surgery. Candidates enter the program through sponsorship from their local Lions Club. They must be a resident of Colorado or Wyoming. The Rocky Mountain Lions Eye Bank Board of Directors reviews the applications and may assist with a grant toward surgery costs.
The eye bank supports 50% of the maintenance costs of the donor registries in our service area. These registries are electronic databases where residents register their decision to be eye, organ and tissue donors. Our two-state region has some of the highest registry rates in the nation. Sign up to be a donor.