Sanskrit for duty, responsibility, or "the path"
We believe we have a special responsibility as a company to treat both our fellow human beings and our planet with deep care and respect - it's our "dharma". We use sustainable materials whenever possible, and we strive to constantly innovate further than the rest of the eyewear industry in order to protect the Earth. We only partner with suppliers that have been audited to ensure safe working conditions and fair labor practices. By keeping these responsibilities front and center, we help you make a positive impact with every purchase from Dharma Company.
How we follow our dharma
GIVE THE GIFT OF SIGHT
Optometry Giving Sight is the only global fundraising initiative that specifically targets the prevention of blindness and impaired vision due to uncorrected refractive error. In other words, they provide access to those in need of the basic but crucial service of an eye exam and a pair of glasses. We donate 5% of every Dharma sale to Optometry Giving Sight because we believe in helping others - and so do you. Every purchase you make transforms lives by providing necessary vision aid to the 600 million people who can't afford it, in countries all around the world.
With every new Dharma frame you purchase, we encourage you to send your old ones back to us. You receive 20% off of your next order, and we donate the used frames to our charity partners. Most recently, we donated 10,000 frames in December 2015 to VOSH international, a global non-profit that seeks to bring vision to every person on the planet. They took our donated frames to Nepal, whose people and infrastructure had just been devastated by an earthquake. They set up vision centers where locals could get tested for eye disease and refractive error, and they provided them with glasses so that they could begin to resume their normal lives.
In a world where sustainability is far from the norm, we're trying to push the boundaries and do better. Our lens suppliers sell all of our leftover materials to other industries so that they can be recycled and used to create new products. Similarly, leftover acetate from our frame manufacturers is melted down and reused to produce new glasses. Our metal frames are coated using an ion-plating method, which - unlike most other production processes - doesn't pump runoff into the environment. Most recently, for our Buddha collection, we exclusively used wood that was harvested from sustainably managed forests certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. We strive to make all of our practices this resource-efficient and environmentally-friendly - keeping our prices fair and protecting Mother Earth.
PRACTICE ETHICAL SOURCING
We have a responsibility to make sure that our products come from factories with high standards of labor. Third-party auditors check our factories to ensure that they provide safe working conditions, adequate social insurance, overtime pay, full record-keeping, and age-verification - among other requirements. These factories are re-checked periodically to guarantee that they are keeping up with our standards, and we can rest easy knowing that our products are made by people who are well taken care of and fairly compensated. Transparency is one of our key values - so if you spot something that we can improve on, we want to hear about it!