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WCB is now on Instagram

In addition to Facebook and Twitter, we are now sharing the news of the sight loss sector in Wales via Instagram. [Full story...]


WCB's RESET project will produce information packs and online resources to assist people with sight loss in negotiating the measures put in place under the Covid-19 pandemic. [Full story...]

WCB Sight Loss Manifesto - we want to hear your views

We need to hear your views so that we can write a manifesto based upon them. [Full story...]

Advice to people with sight loss regarding safe guiding, social distancing and dealing with surfaces

We have updated our coronavirus information to include a new section giving advice to people with sight loss on safe guiding, social distancing and touching surfaces. [Full story...]

Independent review of the Sensory and Communication Service (SenCom) has been published

Led on by WCB, the sight loss sector in Wales campaigned as a single voice against Newport Borough Council’s decision to withdraw from the SenCom group. [Full story...]

Latest edition of Roundup considers inequalities and challenges after lockdown

'The New Normal? Inequalities and challenges after lockdown' is the theme for the latest edition of Wales Council of the Blind's Roundup magazine, which is out now. [Full story...]

Making meetings accessible.

Wales Council for Deaf People and Wales Council of the Blind join forces to produce good practice guidance for accessible meetings. [Full story...]

Shielding in Wales

Wales Council of the Blind is one of over 30 health, care and wellbeing organisations who have written a joint letter to the First Minister of Wales, expressing concern at the clarity of information provided to people in Wales who are shielding, or being asked to take particular care when social distancing. This follows the publication of updated shielding information on 1st June. [Full story...]

WCB would like to hear your views on information and support services in Wales

At Wales Council of the Blind we want to encourage the development of high quality services and to improve our own, and we need your help to do this. [Full story...]

New resource - Use of Direct Payments during the pandemic

Social Care Wales has updated its information about the corona virus to include a section on the flexible use of direct payments during the pandemic. [Full story...]

Welsh Government Consultations

We have produced a list of current Welsh Government consultations of potential interest to the disability sector. [Full story...]

Leonard Cheshire Inclusive Travel Questionnaire

Leonard Cheshire Disability and travel company Expedia are producing a report on disability inclusion within the travel sector. They are asking for feedback and insights from disabled people, and their family and friends, about their experiences of inclusive travel. [Full story...]

New survey into the lives of blind and partially sighted people

The Thomas Pocklington Trust, RNIB and Guide Dogs are to carry out out a major piece of research to uncover the realities of life for blind and partially sighted people in the UK today. [Full story...]

Petition calls for audio description to be available on all films, TV programmes and streaming services

TV channels and film networks are only required to provide audio description to 10% of their films and TV shows. Now, a petition has been started on Change UK calling for AD to be available on all films, TV programmes and streaming services. [Full story...]

The Blind Veterans UK and Circadian Therapeutics Sleep Survey

Blind Veterans UK is working with the University of Oxford and Circadian Therapeutics to explore sleep and circadian rhythm disturbances in severely vision impaired people. They are conducting a survey to gather more information. [Full story...]

RNIB's 'World Turned Upside Down' campaign

RNIB's 'World Turned Upside Down' campaign is raising awareness of the problems faced by vision impaired people as lockdown eases. [Full story...]

RNIB Cymru survey: Accessible healthcare information

RNIB Cymru is conducting a survey on the accessibility of healthcare information in Wales. [Full story...]

RNIB Campaign - street design changes

RNIB is concerned that recent moves to change street layouts to encourage more walking and cycling could make it more difficult for blind and partially sighted people to get around. They are asking people to contact their local councillor and ask them to ensure that the needs of vision impaired people are taken into account when making changes. [Full story...]

Disability Wales survey on easing of lockdown

Disability Wales is conducting an an-line survey to find out how disabled people are feeling about lockdown beginning to be lifted. [Full story...]

Survey: Covid-19 and Charles Bonnet Syndrome

Researchers at Moorfields Eye Hospital are conducting a survey to assess how the Covid-19 pandemic has affected people with Charles Bonnet Syndrome (CBS), which causes hallucinations in some people with sight loss. [Full story...]

Voting is still not accessible for people with sight loss

The results of an RNIB survey on the experiences of vision impaired people when voting in the 2019 General Election show that voting remains inaccessible, with only 13% of blind people able to vote independently and in private. [Full story...]

RNIB Cymru launch Senedd Cymru/Welsh Parliament election manifesto

Elections for the Welsh Parliament/Senedd Cymru are due to take place in 2021, and RNIB Cymru have launched their manifesto, calling on the next government to remove the barriers which are making life difficult for people with sight loss. [Full story...]

New guide for higher education providers supporting students with vision impairment during Covid-19

The Thomas Pocklington Trust, LOOK UK and Guide Dogs have joined forces to produce 'A Guide for Higher Education Providers Supporting students with vision impairment during Covid-19'. [Full story...]

RNIB Toolkit to challenge discrimination

1st October 2020 marked the tenth anniversary of the introduction of the Equality Act, which was intended to protect individuals from unfair treatment and to create a more equal society. RNIB has information to explain the Act, and make a challenge if you feel that you have been discriminated against. [Full story...]

Welsh Parliament/Senedd Cymru Coronavirus Information

As the situation regarding coronavirus changes, with local lockdowns being introduced in many parts of Wales, here is a reminder that the Welsh Parliament/Senedd Cymru has produced a very comprehensive set of information on all aspects of the current coronavirus situation, to ensure that people have access to authoritative and reliable sources of help and advice. [Full story...]

RNIB launch toolkit for challenging inaccessible websites

New Web Accessibility Regulations came into force on 23rd September, requiring public sector websites to be accessible to everyone, including vision impaired people. RNIB has produced a toolkit which explains the new rules, and gives guidance on how to challenge organisations who do not meet these requirements. [Full story...]

'Time to Focus' report makes case for increased research into eye conditions

Fight for Sight, the UK charity that funds eye research has published a new report, 'Time to Focus, which calls urgently for more investment in sight loss research, showing the rising personal and economic cost of sight loss in the UK. [Full story...]

VocalEyes reports on the results of its museums survey

Following a survey carried out in August 2020, VocalEyes has produced a report on the views of visitors with sight loss as museums and heritage sites start to re-open. [Full story...]

Encouraging independence in your child with vision impairment

Henshaws has produced a free book giving hints and tips on how parents can encourage their vision impaired child to become more independent. [Full story...]

Pocklington Trust framework document for parents wanting to set up a support group

The Thomas Pocklington Trust has produced a framework document for parents and carers of children with vision impairment who want to set up a support group. [Full story...]

Back to school information from vision impairment organisations

As children return to school after an exceptionally long break, several vision impairment organisations have help and advice for parents, children and teachers. [Full story...]

LOOK Student's Handbook

LOOK has produced a survival guide for anyone who is vision impaired and heading off to University (or some form of Higher Education) this autumn. [Full story...]

Life in Higher Education - advice for students from the Pocklington Trust

The Thomas Pocklington Trust has advice for vision impaired students who are about to go to university. [Full story...]

Research report: Barriers to integrating routine depression screening into community low vision rehabilitation services

Undetected depression is common in people with low vision and depression screening has been recommended. However, this is a complex procedure for which low vision practitioners need training. A new study into this topic, co-written by researchers at Cardiff University, has been published in the journal BMC Psychiatry. [Full story...]

Sight Life's Swansea, Neath and Port Talbot newsletter available

The latest issue of Sight Life's newsletter for members in Swansea, Neath and Port Talbot is now available. [Full story...]

Guide Dogs plan for restarting activities

As lockdown eases, the Guide Dogs organisation has produced a plan for how it will restart activities in a safe and practical way. [Full story...]

Back to school: Welsh Government issues guidance for supporting vulnerable and disadvantaged learners

Schools in Wales will be reopening in September, and the Welsh Government has issued guidance on how vulnerable and disadvantaged learners can be supported in a school environment which has changed in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The guidance provides advice and sets expectations relating to support for these learners in a range of scenarios. [Full story...]

Updated information leaflets for parents from CHECT

The Childhood Eye Cancer Trust (CHECT) has updated three of their information leaflets for parents: ‘Just Diagnosed’, 'Enucleation’ and ‘Chemotherapy’. [Full story...]

Senedd Equality, Local Government and Communities Committee reports on inequality and the pandemic

The Senedd’s Equality, Local Government and Communities Committee has published the results of its enquiry into the effects of the pandemic. The report, 'Into sharp relief: inequality and the pandemic', finds that 'the virus and the response to it is widening existing inequalities, by reducing the incomes and increasing risks disproportionately for some groups of people'. [Full story...]

Making lockdown measures accessible for customers with sight loss

As lockdown eases, RNIB has produced some simple guidance for businesses on how they can help their vision impaired customers. [Full story...]

Eye clinic appointments: a guide for parents from RNIB

RNIB has produced a guide for parents who may be concerned about attending their child’s hospital eye clinic appointment during coronavirus. [Full story...]

Guides for leisure centres

British Blind Sport has joined forces with RNIB, Visionary and Metro Blind Sport to provide guidance to leisure centres and sporting facilities on how to welcome people with sight loss when they re-open. [Full story...]

Glaucoma UK booklets and information

Glaucoma UK is issuing new leaflets and booklets as part of their relaunch. [Full story...]

Developing visually impaired audiences in Wales - Toolkit for theatres and arts venues

The Arts Council of Wales and Disability Arts Cymru have produced a new guide for theatres and arts venues with advice on how they can be made accessible to vision impaired people. [Full story...]

Welsh Parliament publishes first report on the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on health and social care

The Health, Social Care and Sport Committee of the Welsh Parliament has published its first report on the impact of the coronavirus. [Full story...]

Uber refuses to pick up blind businessman with guide dog on more than 100 occasions

Uber is being prosecuted under the disability discrimination legislation for refusing to pick up a blind businessman and his guide dog on over 100 occasions. [Full story...]

Top tips for providing remote information, advice and guidance during a crisis

Henshaws, the organisation that provides support for people with sight loss in the north of England, has been operating a new model of frontline service delivery for visually impaired service users since the start of the pandemic. Now they have produced some 'Top Tips' on providing these services, base on their experiences. The information will be of interest to any charity or other organisation wanting to provide telephone support. [Full story...]

Macular Society gives advice for parents

The Macular Society has provided advice for parents of children who have been diagnosed with macular disease. [Full story...]

Guide Dogs have produced some top tips on social distancing.

Guide Dogs have created some top tips on how you can #BeThere for people with sight loss whilst practising social distancing where possible. [Full story...]

Travel advice from Guide Dogs and The Macular Society

The coronavirus pandemic has brought changes to the way that people travel on public transport. Guide Dogs and The Macular Society have produced some useful advice for people with sight loss as they try to adapt to the changes. [Full story...]

Welsh Government issues guidance on creating safer public spaces during the coronavirus pandemic

The Welsh Government has issued guidance to the owners and operators of public places to keep people safe when restrictions are relaxed and urban spaces become busier. [Full story...]

'Society is the Disability: Disabled Women and Work' - Report from Chwarae Teg

Chwarae Teg, the organisation that works to ensure that women in Wales can enter the workplace, develop their skills and build rewarding careers, has published a report which looks at the experiences of disabled women; the barriers they have faced in work and the opportunities for improvement. [Full story...]

Supporting your VI child during their transition to High School: LOOK publishes resource document & podcast

LOOK recently held a webinar for parents and carers of vision impaired children in year 6 who are preparing to move to high school in September. They have now published a podcast of the session and also a resource document, which contains a summary of the discussion and gives advice and support. [Full story...]

Results of 'Fight for Sight' survey show impact of pandemic on vision impaired people

The responses to Fight for Sight's recent survey on the impact of the coronavirus on vision impaired people have been analysed. Concerns were raised about access to eye treatment (and the potential deterioration of sight), access to food, and the impact of social distancing measures. [Full story...]

Lockdown advice from Deafblind UK

Deafblind UK has produced some practical advice on coping with issues arising from lockdown for people with dual sensory loss. [Full story...]

Report on Management of nystagmus in children: a review of the literature and current practice in UK specialist services.

This medical review hopes to shine a light on the current management of children with nystagmus across five specialist centres in the UK in order to present, for the first time, a consensus on investigation and clinical management. [Full story...]

LOOK presents 'The Period Podcast'

Periods are seen as a taboo subject, but a new podcast tackles the topic, with a lively chat between a panel of LOOK mentors and women from the LOOK team. The podcast, which covers preparing for and dealing with periods, will be of interest to girls and young women with sight loss, and to their parents. [Full story...]

Temporary transport recommendations: Coronavirus Courtesy Code

From the perspective of blind and partially sighted people, accessible design means detectable kerbs and cycle lanes, inclusive pedestrian crossings and dedicated footways free from obstructions. [Full story...]

Temporary changes to PIP

DWP have introduce several key changes to PIP due to the current pandemic. [Full story...]

No reassessment of benefits for three months - Key changes and commitments from DWP

As of the 24th March, there will be no reassessments across all benefits for three months. [Full story...]

Access to Work claims can be submitted without employer or support worker signature

From 23rd April, Access to Work customers have been able to submit claim forms for reimbursement without an employer or support worker signature. [Full story...]

RNIB produce short guide for local and smaller shops

RNIB is in communication with major supermarkets about the needs of people with sight loss during the current situation. They have also produced a short guide, which can be given to the staff of smaller and local shops, to tell them how they can help vision impaired customers cope with the new conditions imposed to ensure social distancing. [Full story...]

Welsh Government issues advice on ethical values and principles for healthcare delivery framework

The Welsh Government has issued guidance for healthcare services when making decisions during the coronavirus outbreak. The advice has been informed by the set of principles drawn up by members of the Wales Disability Reference Group (including Wales Council of the Blind), and supported by 1,400 signatures. [Full story...]

'Looking after my Eyes' - Book from Seeability

Seeability, the organisation for people with learning disabilities, autism and sight loss, has produced a book, 'Looking after my eyes', to promote more conversations and better eye health for people with learning disabilities. [Full story...]

Blocked in: the impact of pavement parking

Guide Dogs has produced a new report on pavement parking, and is calling on the government to bring forward proposals for a new law. The report is based on responses to an online survey publicised by Guide Dogs and other organisations. [Full story...]

Researchers' discovery could improve diagnosis and lead to new treatments for AMD

Researchers have identified a new protein linked to age-related macular degeneration (AMD) that could offer new hope for the diagnosis and treatment of the disease. [Full story...]

Report on transition experiences of young people with vision impairment

The Thomas Pocklington Trust and the University of Birmingham have been following the experiences of a group of young people with vision impairment as they move from education to employment since 2010. Their latest report, 'The Transition Experiences of Young People with Vision Impairment aged 21 to 24' has just been released. Although there have been some improvements [Full story...]

Brexit and Disability - Common questions answered

Disability Wales has produced a briefing paper on the potential impact of the UK's departure from the European Union on people with disabilities. [Full story...]

How to complain about inaccessible websites - AbilityNet factsheet

Website accessibility remains a problem for people with sight loss: for every 10 disabled users encountering barriers online, on average only one will complain about issues they encounter, and the other nine will give up or take their business elsewhere. Now AbilityNet, the organisation that helps people with disabilities to use digital technology at work, at home or in education, has produced a factsheet, with advice about how to complain. [Full story...]

Report highlights problems faced by older people in accessing GP services

A new report from the Bevan Foundation looks at the problems faced by older people when trying to access GP services in Wales, and highlights issues which will be familiar to people with sight loss. [Full story...]

ECLO Framework documents updated.

The Quality Framework and Practice Guidelines for Eye Clinic Liaison Officers (ECLOs) have been updated. [Full story...]

Welsh Government publishes disability statistics

The Welsh Government's Statistics unit has published the Local authority registers of disabled people as at 31 March 2019. [Full story...]

Welsh theatres need to improve their services for disabled customers

Vocal Eyes, the organisation that aims to increase the access of people with sight loss to the arts and to heritage sites, has produced its annual 'State of Theatre Access Report'. The report considers the availability of access information on theatre websites, and the number of accessible performances. [Full story...]

Welsh Government launch 'Action on Disability: The Right to Independent Living’ framework

The Welsh Government has launched 'Action on Disability: The Right to Independent Living’. The framework is intended to remove barriers that disabled people experience in their everyday lives. [Full story...]

Retina UK publishes results of its Sight Loss Survey 2019

Retina UK, the organisation for people with inherited sight loss, has published the results of its survey of people with sight loss. Over 900 people responded, and gave their views on issues such as quality of life, access to services and support, and knowledge of clinical research. [Full story...]

National Assembly report raises concerns about waiting list delays

The Public Accounts Committee of the Welsh Assembly has produced a report which looks at the management of follow-up outpatient appointments in Wales. The Committee expressed serious concerns about health boards' lack of progress at reducing waiting times for outpatient follow up appointments. [Full story...]

Report reveals the impact of welfare changes on disabled people

The Disability Benefits Consortium (DBC) has been researching the impact of 10 years of benefit cuts on disabled people. Its report, 'Has Welfare become unfair?', reveals that the changes have had a devastating effect, removing financial security and leaving disabled people living in poverty and isolation. [Full story...]

Communicating with people with cerebral visual impairments (CVIs)

The Cerebral Visual Impairment (CVI) Society is publishing information about potential pros and cons when considering the use of alternative communication methods with people with CVIs. [Full story...]

Retina UK reports on the challenges faced by working age people with degenerative sight loss

Retina UK (formerly RP Fighting Blindness) has published the results of a research project which was designed to identify gaps in services that working age people with inherited progressive sight loss would benefit from in their working lives. [Full story...]

Information for adults with acquired nystagmus

Nystagmus Network has updated its booklet 'Adults with Acquired Nystagmus', which describes the condition, its effects and potential treatments and contains advice for managing symptoms. [Full story...]

Advice on making natural heritage centres accessible to people with sight loss

A new guide from Sensing Nature and VocalEyes gives advice to staff and volunteers at natural heritage sites such as nature reserves, country and coastal parks, parklands and gardens on making their sites accessible to visitors with sight loss. 'Supporting multisensory visitor experiences at natural heritage settings' gives detailed guidance on how to encourage and welcome vision impaired people. [Full story...]

'Messy and Muddy' - new guide to outdoor play from RNIB

It's good for children to play outside, and now a new guide from RNIB, 'Messy and Muddy', gives advice on how vision impaired children can get the benefits in a safe and accessible way. [Full story...]

How to make your museum more accessible to vi families and young people

'Kids in Museums', an organisation that works with museums to make them more welcoming for children, young people and families, has produced a guide on how to be more welcoming those who are blind or partially sighted. [Full story...]

Tips on producing an audio descriptive guide for museums and galleries

VocalEyes, the organisation that provides opportunities for blind and partially sighted people to experience the arts, has produced a new guide for museums, galleries and heritage sights wanting to provide a recorded audio descriptive guide for visitors with sight loss. [Full story...]

New guide for employers from RNIB

RNIB has published 'Employing someone with sight loss: a guide for employers'. It is intended to address the concerns that an employer may have about taking on someone with sight loss. [Full story...]

Society has little understanding of life for people with sight loss - New report from Guide Dogs

A new research report from Guide Dogs calls for members of the public to understand more about the everyday life of people with sight loss. 'By My Side' reveals that 60% of vision impaired people say that society has little understanding of the challenges they face, while 57% of sighted people want to understand more about sight loss. [Full story...]

Research study confirms the benefits of Eye Clinic Liaison Officers (ECLOs)

The British Medical Journal (BMJ) has reported on a study into the benefits of Eye Clinic Liaison Officers (ECLOs) in opthalmology clinics, and concluded that their presence is valuable in streamlining processes within the clinic, particularly in relation to the CVI (Certificate of Visual Impairment) process and providing continuity of care for patients when they were discharged from medical treatment. It also showed that ECLOs optimise efficiency within clinics and improve their effectiveness. [Full story...]

Norrie Disease Information Leaflet

The Norrie Disease Foundation has published an information leaflet which will be of interest to anyone affected by this very rare condition, and professionals in the sight loss sector. [Full story...]

Can I tell you about Nystagmus?: A guide for friends, family and professionals

'Can I tell you about Nystagmus?' is a new book aimed at children, parents, carers and professionals looking after children with Nystagmus. It highlights the symptoms of the condition and practically illustrates a number of strategies to help a child with the condition. [Full story...]

Retinoblastoma Information for children & young people

The Childhood Eye Cancer Trust (CHECT) has produced a useful resource for children and young people (and their parents) affected by retinoblastoma. [Full story...]

'Easing into Nature with Sight Impairment'

The University of Exeter and Sensing Nature have produced a booklet which gives advice on how people with sight loss can spend more time with nature - and get the sense of peace, perspective and relief from everyday demands that the natural world can provide. [Full story...]

Wales Vision Strategy 2018 - 2021 launched

The Wales Vision Strategy 2018 - 2012 has been launched at the Senedd, as part of Sensory Loss Awareness Month. [Full story...]

'Making Nature Accessible' - Guide from British Blind Sport

Walking is a great form of exercise, yet lack of accessible footpaths in rural environments and traffic and noise in urban areas can make this challenging for people with sight loss. Now, British Blind Sport (BBS), in association with 'Walking for Health' and the Universities of Sussex and Exeter, has produced a guide to supporting people with vision impairments to participate in group walks. [Full story...]

'Music is a Vibration' toolkit from Sense

Sense, the organisation for people with dual sensory loss, has produced a toolkit for anyone who wants to make their music activities accessible for people with complex disabilities. [Full story...]

Your rights to accessible and adaptable housing in Wales

The Equality and Human Rights Commission in Wales has launched new guidance for disabled people and the organisations that support them which explains their rights and responsibilities regarding housing. [Full story...]

Independent, confident, connected - new report from Scope on disabled people's lives

A new report from Scope has identified the five key areas of life which can be enablers or barriers to disabled people being able to live the life they choose: Attitudes, work, care and support, public transport and digital technology. [Full story...]

'Dealing with bullying ' guide from Contact

Bullying can happen to any child, but is often aimed at children who are different in some way, for example because of a disability. Contact, the UK charity for families with a disabled child, has produced a guide with help and advice for families dealing with this difficult situation. [Full story...]

Eye care for people with learning disabilities

Children and adults with learning disabilities are more likely to have serious sight problems than the rest of the population, yet many of them are not getting the eye care they need. SeeAbility's guide, 'How to be eye care aware', has lots of useful advice for families and support workers. [Full story...]

Holidays, play & leisure guide for parents of disabled children

'Contact', the charity for families with a disabled child, has updated its guide to holidays, play and leisure. [Full story...]

Sight Loss, Home and the Built Environment

The Housing Learning and Improvement Network (LIN), a leading ‘knowledge hub’ on specialist housing, has published a series of resources related to housing and sight loss. The information has been provided in association with the Thomas Pocklington Trust. [Full story...]

New guide for higher education professionals

'Supporting the achievement of learners with vision impairment in Higher Education' is new guide produced by the Vision Impairment Centre for Teaching and Research (VICTAR), University of Birmingham with support from the RNIB, the Thomas Pocklington Trust and the National Sensory Impairment Partnership (NatSIP). [Full story...]

Employment guides from Sense

Sense, the organisation for people with dual sensory loss, has carried out research into the barriers which face deafblind people who are looking for work, and produced three employment guides to help address some of the issues raised. [Full story...]

Guide for GP surgeries should improve accessibilty for patients with sensory loss

A new guide for GP surgeries in Wales should make their services more accessible to people with sight and/or hearing loss. 'Understanding your patients’ needs. Best-practice guide for GP surgeries - Supporting people with Sensory Loss' has been produced by RNIB Cymru and Action on Hearing Loss Cymru, and is based on feedback from people with sensory loss. [Full story...]

Commons Committee reports on disability and the built environment

The Women and Equalities Committee of the UK House of Commons has published the results of its review of accessibility of the UK’s homes, buildings and public spaces. It concludes that, although the Equality Act 2010 requires reasonable adjustments to be made so that disabled people are not excluded from workplaces, public buildings, and places that serve the public, the Act is not having the kind of impact that was expected. [Full story...]

'Working with blind & partially sighted colleagues' - RNIB Guide

RNIB has produced a guide for employers, managers and colleagues of staff members with vision impairment. 'Working with blind and partially sighted colleagues: an employer and staff guide' covers topics such as facts about sight loss, communication and practical support in the workplace. [Full story...]

Eye health awareness in the black and minority ethnic communities in Wales

The results of a project which aimed to increase awareness of eye health and primary eye health care to people from at risk in black and minority ethnic (BME) communities in Wales have been published. [Full story...]

Report claims that UK is failing on disability rights

A report on the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in England and Wales claims that successive Governments have often failed to take account of disabled people’s rights when making policy; and have introduced some policies that actually make things much worse. The report has been produced by Disability Rights UK and Disability Wales, and is based on extensive engagement with disabled people. This included surveys and focus group meetings in venues including Cardiff, Wrexham and Llanelli. [Full story...]

RNIB Scotland updates 'Sight loss and dementia' leaflet

RNIB Scotland and the Alzheimer's Society have updated their leaflet for people with dementia. It has been produced for people with the condition, but will also be useful for carers and family members. [Full story...]

How Accessible is Access to Work in Wales? 3 years on.

A report was published by RNIB Cymru and Wales Council of the Blind highlighting disabled peoples' experiences of the Access to Work service. An update in 2019 has been published and is available here. [Full story...]

10 principles of good practice in vision rehabilitation

RNIB has produced a guide which tells people with sight loss what they should expect from rehabilitation services. '10 Principles of Good Practice in Vision Rehabilitation' covers aspects such as the right to a specialist assessment, and to provision of aids and adaptations. [Full story...]

Parents guide to vision impairment from RNIB

RNIB has produced a new edition of its resource 'Information about vision impairment: Guide for parents'. The document gives information on what vision impairments is, how it affects your child, and sources of support. [Full story...]

RNIB #DesignForEveryone campaign aims to increase accessibility

A new campaign from RNIB highlights the way that products designed without consideration of accessibility deny people with sight loss their privacy. [Full story...]

Welsh Pavement Parking Task Force produces report

The Wales Pavement Parking Task Force Group was formed by the Welsh Government in July 2019 to address an issue which is a major concern for vision impaired people. The Task Force has now produced a report, which recommends that 'parking on pavements should be tackled by changing driver behaviour through raising awareness that pavements are for pedestrians and not for vehicles, backed-up by the deterrent of effective enforcement'. [Full story...]

Audio described commentary returns to Wrexham Football Club

Wrexham Disabled Supporters Association (DSA) has announced that audio described commentary of the team's matches has now resumed via Zoom. The service is free to both home and away fans. [Full story...]

'Living Paintings' featured on TV

Viewers of BBC1's The One Show on 2nd September were able to see how the 'touch to see' books produced by Living Paintings help children with sight loss. The charity was one of a number of organisations that benefitted from the BBC's Big Night In appeal to help charities affected by the coronavirus crisis. [Full story...]

Identity card for deafblind people

It can be particularly difficult at the moment for people who are deafblind to communicate while they are out and about. Deafblind UK has designed a card which you can carry around with you to show that you are dual sensory impaired, and state how people can help you. [Full story...]

Transport for Wales joins the Sunflower Lanyard Scheme

Transport for Wales has joined the Sunflower Lanyard scheme, which allows the wearer to discreetly indicate that they may have additional needs that are not immediately obvious. [Full story...]

RNIB Bookshare Service for learners responds to the pandemic

The RNIB Bookshare service has a vast UK education collection that provides textbooks and materials to support the UK curriculum from early years to adult education. The free service for learners with a print disability, which can be accessed by teachers, students and now parents in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, has a range of accessible formats so books can be read electronically or adapted to suit personal reading needs. Books for leisure reading are also available. [Full story...]

LEGO Braille Bricks website launched

There is now a website for LEGO Braille Bricks, containing information about them and a wide range of suggested activities that children can carry out using the bricks. [Full story...]

Concerns raised about accessibility of arts venues after lockdown

Theatres and other arts venues are facing significant challenges when they try to reopen as lockdown eases. Concerns have been raised that these challenges will be magnified when trying to meet the need of people with sight loss, with features such as touch tours being impossible to provide safely. [Full story...]

Tesco expands priority shoppers list

Supermarket Tesco has agreed to extend its list of priority shoppers, following legal action for breaching the Equality Act 2010. Over 300 disabled people complained, including some with sight loss. [Full story...]

Covid-19: Guide Dogs issue guidance to bus and train operators

The Covid-19 crisis has resulted in changes to public transport to cater for social distancing and other measures. The Guide Dogs organisation has issued guidance to bus and train operators, giving advice on how they can support customers with sight loss as they adjust to the changes. [Full story...]

'The Interval' - Accessible cultural experiences during lockdown

VocalEyes, the organisation which promotes the use of audio description in arts and culture, is producing a weekly selection of accessible cultural experiences available remotely until theatres, museums and concert halls re-open their doors. [Full story...]

Accessibility features on Welsh health websites

Both Public Health Wales and NHS Direct Wales have put accessibility features on the coronavirus sections of their website. [Full story...]

Communications needs advice to health workers

Advice on communication needs for people with sensory loss and problems accessing mainstream print media has been compiled for health workers with supplementary material from Welsh organisations. [Full story...]

Accessible communication advice for health workers

A number of organisations in England have put together this advice on communications needs. [Full story...]

RNIB launch new way to access its library service

RNIB Reading Services has announced changes to its free online library, which now includes new features such as access to eBraille books. [Full story...]

New passenger assistance meeting point at Cardiff Central

Transport for Wales has introduced dedicated passenger assistance meeting points at Cardiff Central Station, which are located at the front of the station near the customer service desk and at the rear of the station near the barriers. [Full story...]

Office of Road and Rail issues new accessible travel policy guidance to train and station operators

Following a consultation exercise last year, the Office of Road and Rail (ORR) has issued new Accessible Travel Policy Guidance for train and station operators, which sets out the commitments they must include in their policies for helping older and disabled people to travel by rail. [Full story...]

Accessible washing machines - guidance from RIDC

The Research Institute for Disabled Consumers (RIDC) has produced a checklist for vision impaired people who are looking for a washing machine. [Full story...]

High Court says UK Government's arrangements for vision impaired voters are unlawful

The UK's High Court has ruled the Government’s current arrangements for voters with a vision impairment are unlawful as use of the Tactical Voting Devices (TVDs) that they specify do not allow them to vote without any need for assistance. The ruling follows a challenge from a registered blind voter in Norwich, whose case was supported by RNIB. [Full story...]

Concessionary Travel on trains

If you have a Concessionary Travel Pass from a Welsh Local Authority, you can travel free on many trains operated by Transport for Wales. You can also get 1/3 off tickets to travel on the Cardiff and Valley network after 0930 Monday - Friday, and any time at weekends and bank holidays. [Full story...]

Toolkit to help Guide Dog users respond to access refusals

Guide Dogs and RNIB have joined forces to produce a toolkit which will help guide dog users to respond when faced with access refusals, for example in shops and when trying to use taxis. [Full story...]

RSS news reader for people with macular degeneration launched

A news feed for people with macular disease has been developed by Royal Holloway, University of London, to enable them to keep up with the news. It is designed to support the use of reading with the ‘eccentric viewing’ technique, whereby the individual holds their gaze slightly away from the text that scrolls from right-to-left like a news ticker. [Full story...]

RNIB launch new bilingual personal transcription service

RNIB's Personal Transcription Portal can take your printed material (books, letters etc.) and convert it into your preferred accessible format in English or Welsh. [Full story...]

Hynt - single national access scheme for disabled customers and their carers in Wales

Hynt is a national scheme that works with theatres and arts centres across Wales to make things clear and consistent for people with an impairment or specific access requirements. Its also a resource for anyone who needs specific access information to plan a trip to the theatre. [Full story...]

LOOK Parent Support Group for Usher families

LOOK is collaborating with Usher Kids UK to run a Parent Support Group. Opportunities to connect with other Usher families are vital, as they help parents learn and share ideas about how to best support their children. The Zoom video calls will cover a range of topics, and are aimed at any parent or carer of a child with Usher syndrome. [Full story...]

'Minds in Sight' virtual forum for young people with vision impairment

The second session of Vision Support's "Minds in Sight" young people's forum will take place on Saturday November 21st from 2:00pm, around the theme of Employment. [Full story...]

Digital Glaucoma Support Group meetings

Glaucoma UK has announced two online support group meetings to be held during November, via Zoom. [Full story...]

Sight Life activities for people in the Cardiff and Swansea areas

Although face-to-face activities are still suspended, Sight Life continues to provide a wide range of telephone groups and activities for its members in Cardiff, Swansea, Neath and Port Talbot. [Full story...]

Macular Society Working Age and Young People's Group virtual clininc

The next meeting of the Macular Society's Working Age and Young People's virtual clinic on 29th October will focus on the MyEyeSite project. [Full story...]

Half-term activities with UCAN Productions

UCAN Productions is holding a series of free workshops for children and young people via Zoom over the half term break. [Full story...]

Alström Syndrome UK 'Healthy Minds, Healthy You' webinar

Alström Syndrome UK (ASUK) is running a webinar on 22nd October to look at mental health and wellbeing for people with the condition during the pandemic. [Full story...]

RNC Virtual Open Day and Have a Go event, and College Tours

Royal National College for the Blind is holding a virtual parental Open Day and Young Visually Impaired persons fun Have-a-Go day on Saturday 24th October. This replaces the Have-a-Go weekend scheduled for 24th/25th October, which has been cancelled due to coronavirus restrictions. [Full story...]

Charles Bonnet Syndrome Patient Information Event

There is a Charles Bonnet Syndrome (CBS) Patient Information Event to mark five years since the launch of Esme's Umbrella and 300 years since Charles Bonnet’s birth. The event will be held online on Monday 16th November from 10 am - 12.30. [Full story...]

RNIB Connect Cymru Telephone Groups

The RNIB Community Connection team in Wales runs a wide range of telephone groups. [Full story...]

LOOK webinar for professionals – Teaching PSHE for VI pupils in a mainstream setting.

LOOK UK is running a free webinar for professionals teaching relationship and sex education to students with a vision impairment in a mainstream setting. [Full story...]

The Pocklington Trust marks Blindness Awareness Month with a programme of activities

October is Blindness Awareness Month (including National Braille Week and World Sight Day), and to mark the event the Pocklington Trust is running a programme of videos, podcasts, webinar events, articles and stories, mainly based around accessible technology in the workplace. [Full story...]

Pocklington Trust employment webinar on 21st October

The Thomas Pocklington Trust is running another of its employment webinars on 21st October. It is an opportunity to find out about using your skillset to successfully change careers from Charles Coyle, who is a civil servant working in central government, and is vision impaired himself. [Full story...]

Sense launch weekly 'Exercise through Dance' sessions

Sense is launching a new Exercise Through Dance class for people with dual sensory loss, in association with Para Dance UK. [Full story...]

Minority Ethnic Communities Health Fair goes online

This year's Minority Ethnic Communities Health Fair will be an online event on Thursday 29th October. [Full story...]

New College Worcester 'Outreach Twilight Sessions'

New College Worcester is to run three, free sessions with advice and information on teaching vision impaired children. [Full story...]

LOOK's Parent Support Group reflects on the first half of term

Meetings of LOOK's Parent Support Group have resumed, and the next meeting will be on Wednesday 21st October at 8 pm. It is an opportunity to reflect on the first half of the term, and discuss any concerns you may have about how your child is coping with the changed environment. [Full story...]

Deafblind UK Social Group Telephone Calls

If you would like an opportunity to talk to people who are also living with deafblindness, join Deafblind UK's social group telephone calls and BSL video chats which are proving so popular that there are now 8 groups every fortnight. [Full story...]

Guide Dogs webinars

Guide Dogs is continuing to run its programme of technology webinars to help people with sight loss, their friends and families, and anyone who supports them, gain a wider knowledge of technology and its benefits. [Full story...]

RNIB Cymru 'Living with Sight Loss' courses

RNIB’s Face to Face Living with Sight Loss courses are currently postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak. RNIB are offering telephone based courses which take place over 6 weeks. If you would like to attend a phone course whilst you wait for a face to face course, please contact the helpline on 0303 123 9999. [Full story...]

Macular Society support group meetings continue via the telephone

There are Macular Society Support Groups across Wales, offering practical and emotional support for people with macular disease. Although physical meetings have been suspended during the pandemic, groups are continuing to meet via the telephone. [Full story...]

British Wireless for the Blind Fund Connect service to be extended

British Wireless for the Blind Fund (BWBF) started its Connect service to enable them to continue to support people living with sight loss throughout the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. The charity has now decided to extend the scheme to continue supporting people with sight loss who may be choosing to shield. [Full story...]

Free Amazon Fire Tablets from RNIB

RNIB is offering Amazon Fire Tablets free to those who currently receive its large or giant print books and who have access to the internet. [Full story...]

Google's Lookout App can read grocery labels

Google's Lookout App can now read the labels of grocery items. [Full story...]

Useful 'Alexa' commands and other technology advice from Henshaws

Henshaws has produced a useful list of simple commands that can be used with Amazon's Alexa app to make life easier for people with sight loss. [Full story...]

Social distancing app

A social distancing app for Android and Chrome called Sodar is now available to help people with sight loss keep distance from other people. [Full story...]

Results of stem cell treatment for wet AMD 'surpass expectations'

Patients who were the first to receive a new treatment for wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) derived from stem cells in 2015 have maintained improvements in their vision five years on. [Full story...]

Tech Talkers

Macular Society Connect by Tech is a brand new service to help people make the most of things like tablets, smartphones and smart speakers to stay connected. [Full story...]

'Be My Eyes' users can now connect with RNIB

'Be My Eyes', the app that allows vision impaired people to call on sighted volunteers, has announced that the app can now be used to connect with RNIB for specialised advice. [Full story...]

20 things the Amazon Echo can make easier for vi people

There's a useful article on the 'Life of a Blind Girl' blog about how the Amazon Echo can make a real difference to the lives of people with sight loss. [Full story...]

New wet AMD drug could be available in 2020

The Macular Society has reported that, Novartis could launch its new drug for wet age-related macular degeneration in Europe early 2020 after getting approval from the European Medicines Agency. [Full story...]

'Fight for Sight' to fund glaucoma bio bank

The organisation 'Fight for Sight' has announced that it will fund a project to create the UK’s first large-scale glaucoma biobank, a new tool that will help personalise glaucoma treatment and identify patients most at risk of sight loss. [Full story...]

RNIB technology grant scheme

RNIB offers grants to vision impaired people for useful technology that can help them to live independently. This includes accessibility software, accessible smartphones or tablets, and talking kitchen equipment. [Full story...]

Research project seeks an alternative to eye injections

A research project is considering a way to deliver drugs to the back of the eye through eye drops. [Full story...]

Report claims that laser treatment is best for glaucoma

Research by Moorfields Eye Hospital, published in The Lancet, suggests that using a laser-based treatment on newly diagnosed cases of glaucoma is more successful and more cost-effective than the current method of using eye drops. It could also result in significant savings for the NHS. [Full story...]

Gene therapy first to 'halt' most common cause of blindness

A woman from Oxford has become the first person in the world to have gene therapy to try to halt the most common form of blindness in the Western world, age-related macular degeneration (AMD). It is too early to tell the results from this trial, but if it is successful, the aim would be to treat patients before they have lost any sight, in a bid to halt AMD in its tracks. [Full story...]

UCAN Go Indoor navigation app for Cardiff Central Library Hub

UCAN Go indoor navigation app for Cardiff Central Library Hub. [Full story...]

Accessibility features of Windows and MS Office

Microsoft has a section of its website which describes the most popular accessibility features of Windows and Microsoft Office. It also covers assistive technology products for Windows and Microsoft Office that are designed for people who are blind or have low vision. [Full story...]

Artificial Intelligence as good as experts in diagnosing eye disease

A study by Moorfields Eye Hospital and DeepMind (a Google company) has found that artificial intelligence (AI) can diagnose eye disease as accurately as some leading experts. Although further trials are needed, it is hoped that this development could eventually lead to quicker diagnosis and reduce delays. [Full story...]

'Soundscape' app to open up towns & cities to people with sight loss

Microsoft have launched Soundscape, an app that makes it easier for people with sight loss to explore our towns and cities. The App is a result of a collaboration between Guide Dogs and Microsoft. People with sight loss were at the heart of the development of the technology, influencing its design and testing the product. [Full story...]

Guide Dogs 'Access and Technology' Grants

Guide Dogs' Children and Young People's Services offer grants towards the purchase of assistive or adaptive technology and sensory toys for those aged 18 years and under with vision impairment. [Full story...]

Job opportunity at Sight Cymru

Sight Cymru are seeking an ECLO (Eye Clinic Liaison Officer). [Full story...]

Mock interviews with the Thomas Pockington Trust

Job seekers with vision impairment are being offered the opportunity of a mock interview with the Thomas Pocklington Trust's Employment Team. [Full story...]

Guide Dogs Christmas card competition

The Guide Dogs charity is holding a competition for children and young people with sight loss under 18 years old to design a Christmas Card. [Full story...]

The BBC is looking for more diverse voices

The BBC's 50:50 project aims to increase the range of its contributors to better reflect the diversity of its audience. This means, for example, that disabled people with specialist knowledge of a particular topic are invited to contribute to discussions on that topic. [Full story...]

Opportunity to help research into Dry AMD

Do you have late-stage dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD) or know someone who does? Researchers are looking for patients with the condition to take part in a new study, which could help scientists understand the role genetics plays in the disease. [Full story...]

Free counselling via Skype from LOOK UK

LOOK has teamed up with York College to offer free skype counselling sessions to vision impaired people aged 18+, as well as their network of support staff, parents, carers and siblings. [Full story...]

Job opportunities with Optometry Wales

Optometry Wales has four vacancies for administrative workers. The work can be done flexibly, in your own time and out of office hours. [Full story...]

Applications now open for Leonard Cheshire Disability's Change 100 scheme

Change 100 is Leonard Cheshire Disability (LCD)'s annual programme of paid summer work placements, professional development and mentoring for disabled students and recent graduates. Applications are now open to join the scheme in 2021. [Full story...]

Volunteers wanted to test vision monitoring app

Would you like to test an app, which may help reduce the number of times you need to visit your eye clinic? Okko Health is asking for volunteers with macular disease to test a new home-monitoring app, which uses software similar to a video game to assess visual health. [Full story...]

Chance to tell your glaucoma story

Glaucoma UK is looking for people with glaucoma who would like to appear in a series of webinars about patients’ experiences. [Full story...]

Parents of vision impaired children wanted to help research project

A PhD student at Swansea University is conducting a research project titled 'A qualitative study of psychological wellbeing among family members of visually impaired children and adolescents, and is looking for parents to be interviewed by phone. [Full story...]

Leonard Cheshire Disability 'Change Makers' programme for young people

Leonard Cheshire has launched its 'Change Makers' scheme, which gives young people with disabilities aged 16 to 25 years the opportunity to become a citizen reporter. [Full story...]

Visually Impaired Sailing Association events for 2021

The Visually Impaired Sailing Association Great Britain is run by blind and partially sighted sailing enthusiasts to help others enjoy the freedom of sailing. [Full story...]

RNIB Cymru's Connect Voices Network seeks new members

RNIB Cymru is looking for people with sight loss to help shape what they do. [Full story...]

Scope - Working on Wellbeing project

Disability charity Scope's 'Working on Wellbeing' project is an employment training and support programme for disabled people in Wales. Advisors will work with individuals to develop a programme around their career goals and how they can be achieved. [Full story...]

People with macular disease wanted to take part in research project

The Department of Psychology at City, University of London is looking for volunteers for a study on the effects of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) on communication, social interaction and interpersonal relationships. [Full story...]

British Blind Sport launches 'First Steps' project for children

British Blind Sport has launched 'First Steps', a project designed to empower and encourage children between the ages of 3 – 11 years old with a visual impairment to develop their early developmental movement skills and to become physically active. [Full story...]

The University of Bristol would like to hear your views on 'smart' research.

The University of Bristol is researching people's views on 'smart' research on public-access campuses and what this means for the future of research ethics. [Full story...]

Tell your story of Covid-19 for the National Museum of Wales

The National Museum of Wales is collecting information about how people in Wales have lived their lives during the Covid-19 pandemic - and it is a good opportunity for people with sight loss to record the impact of this extraordinary period of time on them. [Full story...]

The Welsh Ambluance Service wants to hear your experiences of accessing their service.

If you have accessed any of the services provided by the Welsh Ambulance Service over the past few months, they would like to hear your views. [Full story...]

VICTA Activities Schedule

Despite the current difficulties, VICTA is hoping to run some activities for children, young people and young adults with sight loss later in the year. [Full story...]

Glaucoma UK Research Grant Awards 2020

Glaucoma UK has launched a £100,000 PHD Studentship Award. [Full story...]

JobSense continue to take new referrals

The JobSense team are fully operating their pre-employment support. [Full story...]

Call for participants: Academic research focused on the social and academic inclusion of adolescents with and without visual impairments

A PhD researcher in the Department of Psychology at Kingston University London is looking for participants to help with research into the social and academic inclusion of adolescents with and without visual impairments. [Full story...]

Visually Impaired Genealogists Group

Are you blind, partially sighted, or deafblind and interested in your ancestry? Would you like to trace your family history? A new, free to join group can give you all the help you need, including help with your assistive technology. [Full story...]

Deafblind UK Holidays

Deafblind UK has three self catering caravans which provide a home from home break for people with dual sensory loss at heavily discounted rates. [Full story...]

Technology volunteering opportunities with RNIB Cymru

RNIB Cymru is looking for volunteers from across Wales to help blind and partially sighted people access life-changing technology. [Full story...]

Volunteering opportunities with RNIB Cymru

RNIB Cymru is looking for Welsh and English speaking volunteers to help out with their transcription services in Cardiff. [Full story...]

Macular Society peer support group for parents

The Macular Society now has a peer support group for parents with children with juvenile macular dystrophies. [Full story...]

LOOK Mentoring Scheme

LOOK UK, the organisation which provides help, support and services for vision impaired children, young adults and their families, has a peer mentoring service for vision impaired children and young adults aged 11-29 who are at school, university/college or looking for work. [Full story...]

JobSense employability project for people with sensory loss

JobSense is an employability project funded by the Welsh Government and EU. It will work with unemployed people with sight or hearing loss aged over 25 years, giving them personalised support to build confidence and skills, and provide information about technology and schemes such as Access to Work that can help them in the workplace. [Full story...]

Changing Futures - Employment programme for disabled people in Swansea and Bridgend

Changing Futures is an employment programme aimed at individuals with a disability living in the Swansea/Bridgend areas who are struggling to access training, volunteering or employment. The programme, which is run by Leonard Cheshire Disability, provides one-to-one and group training regarding job brokerage, and on the job and work related accredited training tailored to individual needs. It also provides up to 26 weeks of full time paid employment with local employers. [Full story...]

Guide Dogs Cymru 'Pathway to Participation' project

The Guide Dogs Cymru 'Pathway to Participation' project opens up access to sporting, social/leisure activities and clubs for children and young people with a visual impairment aged between 10-18 years in Wales, supporting them to expand existing interests, explore new opportunities and develop new social networks. The project is supported by Children in Need Cymru. [Full story...]

Retina UK Online Information and Support resources include Facebook Group for Wales

Retina UK has a number of online support resources which are available via social media. These include a range of local peer support groups on Facebook, including one covering Wales. [Full story...]

RNIB launch Emergency Mental Health Sessions

On World Mental Health Day, RNIB announced the launch of a new Emergency Mental Health Service: free sessions by BACP-registered counsellors with sight loss experience, over the phone, to give emotional support during these difficult times. [Full story...]

Could filters and tints help your eye condition?

Henshaws has produced a very informative new video with information about the variety of filters and tints which are designed to enhance contrast and definition to assist with certain eye conditions. [Full story...]

Local lockdowns: what older people need to know

As many areas of Wales go into local lockdowns, Care and Repair Cymru has details of how each area is affected, and answers to the most common questions. [Full story...]

Advice on making video calls accessible from Deafblind UK

As the use of video technology (such as Zoom) to hold meetings increases, Deafblind UK has produced some useful tips on how to make your video calls accessible to people with sight and/or hearing loss. [Full story...]

'Reality or Illusion?' Film about Charles Bonnet Syndrome

'Reality or Illusion?' is a 14-minute training film about Charles Bonnet Syndrome, presented by consultant ophthalmologist Manoj Kulshrestha. [Full story...]

Advice on wearing a face mask from the RNIB Connect community

Members of the RNIB Connect community have shared some tips on wearing a face mask if you have sight loss. [Full story...]

Diabetes UK gives advice on eye care during the pandemic

Diabetes is a leading cause of preventable sight loss in the UK, and Diabetes UK has advice on how you can keep your eyes healthy if you have the condition. [Full story...]

Glaucoma UK Digital Support Group sessions available to view

Glaucoma UK's series of Digital Support Groups has now finished, but you can view the sessions on YouTube. [Full story...]

Job seeking and employment videos

The Macular Society and Support4Sight have joined forces to create a series of videos, exploring the challenges of employment and looking for work as a visually impaired person. [Full story...]

Advice on tolerating face masks for vi children

CVI Scotland has produced some advice on how children with sight loss can be supported to wear face masks. [Full story...]

Social Distancing tools

Since COVID-19 there has been a new focus on the need to maintain social distancing. While the public has made great efforts at this, as with all things that require ongoing conscious efforts, people get tired. This coupled with increased anxiety of many who feel vulnerable, the virus still being present in our communities and the shielding period coming to an end, has made a number of groups explore the concept of polite prompting of others by a means of self-identifying with a badge or similar. Both RNIB and the Bevan Foundation have designed items that individuals can wear or carry to request that social distancing is observed. [Full story...]

Macmillan Cancer Support launches Telephone Buddy Service

Going through cancer can be an isolating experience at any time, and especially when social distancing. Macmillan Cancer Support has launched a free Telephone Buddy service to provide support at this difficult time. [Full story...]

UCAN Productions launch 'The Pod Squad'

The Pod Squad is a new podcast from UCAN Productions, created by, and for, vision impaired young people. [Full story...]

Tips for attending your eye clinic appointment during coronavirus from RNIB

RNIB has produced a short film which contains practical advice for people attending an eye clinic appointment during the coronavirus pandemic. [Full story...]

VICTA Parent Portal - resources for home schooling

VICTA Parent Portal, the information hub for parents and carers raising a child who is blind or partially sighted, has put together a list of education resources for home schooling during the Covid-19 pandemic. [Full story...]

The Amber Trust launches new online resource for teaching music to blind children

The Amber Trust has launched 'Amber Sound Touch', the first comprehensive online teaching resource for music that specifically caters for teachers working with blind and partially sighted children. [Full story...]

British Blind Sport Audio Exercise Programmes

British Blind Sport is encouraging people with sight loss to keep exercising despite the current restrictions with their campaign #StayInWorkOut. [Full story...]

Welsh Government advice for unpaid carers.

Welsh Government has issued advice for unpaid carers about regulations and best practise during Covid-19 measures. [Full story...]

Problems with lockdown measures for people with sight loss

Lockdown measures such as social distancing are creating problems for people with sight loss due to the ocular-centricity of the guidance. [Full story...]

New tool from Welsh Government to help people struggling due to Coronavirus

The Welsh Government has launched a new triage tool for Welsh citizens, setting out where they can get help and advice for their individual circumstances during the COVID-19 pandemic. [Full story...]

Advice for taxi and minicab drivers

Guide Dogs have prepared advice on how drivers can safely work with customers who are blind and partially-sighted. [Full story...]

Mental health and wellbeing advice from Henshaws and The Macular Society

For Mental Health Awareness Week, The Macular Society and Henshaws produced some useful advice for people with sight loss. [Full story...]

Social distancing tips from Henshaws

Social distancing can be a challenge when you have sight loss. Now a senior rehabilitation officer from Henshaws (who is vision impaired himself) has produced a list of 11 top tips to help you to get around during the current restrictions. [Full story...]

RNIB are offering free subscriptions to Newsagent during the coronavirus pandemic

Subscription to RNIB's Newsagent is now free during the coronavirus pandemic. [Full story...]

Services from Vision Support during Covid-19 pandemic

During Covid-19, Vision Support have been continuing with many services by telephone, including digital support. Staff are available on the phone to talk to you and ensure that you remain connected to your local community and to the charity. [Full story...]

Live Fear Free: domestic abuse helpline.

The Live Fear Free Helpline offers support to victims of domestic abuse and sexual violence. Welsh Women's Aid offers National Helpline for Wales and supports women, men and children. [Full story...]

New website to support the education of vision impaired children

Sarah Hughes, Head of the Vision Impairment Service for South East Wales and Chair of Welsh Association of Vision Impairment Educators (WAVIE), has set up a website containing information to support the education of children with sight loss. [Full story...]

Deafblind UK launches new Wellbeing and Emotional Support service

Deafblind UK has launched a new, free, support service to provide in-depth assistance to people with dual sensory loss. [Full story...]

How to get your prescriptions if you're unable to leave the house.

Here is some advice from Community Pharmacy Wales on getting prescriptions delivered or redirected. [Full story...]

Macular Society launches 'Connect by Tech' service

The Macular Society has launched a new service which provides telephone support to people with sight loss who need help to use technology during the corona virus crisis. [Full story...]

Useful advice and resources for families from LOOK and Guide Dogs

The websites of LOOK UK and Guide Dogs have lots of helpful information for families with vision impaired children during the corona virus crisis. [Full story...]

Age Cymru West Glamorgan have extended their meal delivery service

Age Cymru West Glamorgan have extended their meal delivery service. [Full story...]

Advice for people helping a vision impaired person with shopping

Blind Veterans UK and Henshaws have published useful advice for anyone who is helping a vision impaired person with shopping. Both organisations stress the importance of talking to the person you are helping, to understand their preferences and the systems they have in place. [Full story...]

Guide Dogs Covid-19 Sight Loss Information Line

Guide Dogs has launched a telephone advice line providing answers and information for adults and the families of children with sight loss. [Full story...]

Welsh Government issuing letters to most vulnerable.

Letters to individuals identified as in need of shielding are being sent out this week. Accessible formats are being produced. [Full story...]

Sensory learning advice from Henshaws

Henshaws has produced some useful information on how children with sight loss can learn to complete tasks by using other senses such as touch and hearing. [Full story...]

Coronavirus (COVID-19) and diabetes

Diabetes UK has issued advice about the corona virus situation for people with this condition. [Full story...]

Sources of support in Torfaen

Torfaen Social Services has provided information about community resources which are available to support people in the area during the corona virus pandemic. [Full story...]

Disabled People’s Frequently Asked Questions on Coronavirus COVID-19

Disability Wales has updated its website with information for disabled people during the corona virus outbreak. [Full story...]

Home schooling resources during the corona virus crisis

VIEW, a registered charity, which helps to support the education, development and opportunities of children with vision impairment (VI), has produced a list of resources which will be useful to parents of children during the current corona virus crisis. [Full story...]

Resources for parents from Positive Eye

Positive Eye is a provider of educational consultancy and training for professionals working with children and young people with vision impairment. They have responded to the current crisis by producing fun ideas, activities and inspiration for parents and families during the periods of time spent at home during the months of the COVID19 Epidemic. [Full story...]

Cwm Taf Care and Repair offers extra support during corona virus outbreak

Cwm Taf Care and Repair is launching two new services to help older people in the area during the corona virus crisis. [Full story...]

Visual Impairment Breconshire telephone befriending service will continue to operate

Following the Government's latest advice regarding the Corona Virus, Visual Impairment Breconshire has postponed all face-to-face activities. However, they will continue to operate their telephone befriending service. [Full story...]

VICTA launches Student Helpline

VICTA has launched a new Helpline for university students with a vision impairment. [Full story...]

RNIB Grant Scheme

RNIB offers grants to registered blind or partially sighted people for useful technology that can help them live independently. [Full story...]

Sight Advice FAQ

A group of sight loss charities, including Fight for Sight, RNIB and Guide Dogs, has launched a new website, Sight Advice FAQ, to answer questions about all aspects of sight loss. [Full story...]

Sighted guiding resources from Guide Dogs

The Guide Dogs organisation has produced a set of videos giving advice on guiding someone with sight loss. They will be of interest to friends, families, and anyone who has contact with vision impaired people. [Full story...]

'Little Amber' scheme helps babies and young children engage with music

The Amber Trust is a UK charity which was set up to help vision impaired children with a talent, or love for, music. Their 'Little Amber' service provides parents and professionals of vision impaired babies and children aged 0 - 5 years with free online resources to help them use music to engage with them. Families on the scheme receive two-hour music sessions four times a year from a trained music practitioner, plus a deck of specially designed activity cards and a set of starter percussion instruments. [Full story...]

'The emotional impact of a diagnosis of AMD' - new training resource from the Macular Society

The Macular Society has added a second module to its series of free on-line training resources for professionals. 'The emotional impact of a diagnosis of AMD' is intended to give professionals information on how they can support newly-diagnosed patients, understand the risks to mental health, and provide appropriate information and advice. [Full story...]

Vital Tech - Guide to assistive technology

Vital Tech is a website which seeks to be an impartial, straightforward guide through the world of assistive technology in the UK. The site, supported by Thomas Pocklington Trust, provides an overview of products and resources which blind and partially sighted people may find useful in daily life. [Full story...]

What are reasonable adjustments? Guidance from EHRC

The UK's equality law requires employers to make 'reasonable adjustments' to ensure that, as far as possible, disabled people have the same access to getting and doing a job as someone without a disability. The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has produced a range of resources for employees giving more information about what is 'reasonable'. [Full story...]

Database of optometrists providing services for people with learning disabilities

SeeAbility, the organisation that supports people with learning disabilities and sight loss, has produced a map showing UK optometrists and dispensing opticians who have shared information on their services for people with learning disabilities. [Full story...]

Macular Support Groups in North Wales

As several new Macular Support Groups have started in North Wales, we have produced a summary of venues and dates. [Full story...]

Direct Payments - online resource

Social Care Wales has launched an on-line resource for recipients of Direct Payments, and professionals working with them. A Direct Payment is money provided to an individual from a local authority as an alternative to directly arranged community care services. [Full story...]

'The Right to Participate' resource aims to increase awareness of the Equality Act

Disability Rights UK has launched an online resource titled 'The Right to Participate'. It aims to increase awareness of the Equality Act, especially the ways it can protect disabled people from discrimination in everyday situations. [Full story...]

Films from Deafblind UK

Deafblind UK has produced a series of short films to raise awareness of the work that they do, and the people that they support. [Full story...]

Disability discrimination at school - advice from Contact

Contact, the organisation that supports the families of disabled children, has produced information about a disabled child's rights at school, and how to respond if these are not met. This follows a high level of calls to the Contact helpline from parents whose disabled children have been unlawfully excluded from school activities. [Full story...]

Understanding Cerebral Vision Impairment (CVI)

The website of CVI Scotland has some useful resources which explain Cerebral Vision Impairment. [Full story...]

Nystagmus Network launches Education Resource Hub

Nystagmus Network (NN) has launched a new resource for parents and carers of children with nystagmus, comprising practical information, signposting to resources and answers to frequently asked questions. [Full story...]

New animation launched to raise awareness of Alström Syndrome

Alström Syndrome is an ultra rare, recessively inherited genetic disorder, which means that both parents will carry the gene although probably be unaffected themselves. It can affect many aspects of health including vision and hearing. Now Alström Syndrome UK, the organisation which supports families affected by the condition, has produced a short animation to raise awareness. [Full story...]

Diabetic Eye Screening during the Welsh Coronavirus 'Firebreak'

Public Health Wales has confirmed that the Diabetic Eye Screening programme will continue to operate during the coronavirus 'Firebreak' in Wales, and that attending a pre-booked screening appointment is a permitted reason for travelling in that period (from 6 pm on 23rd October to 00.01 am on 9th November). However, you should not travel if you have symptoms of coronavirus, have tested positive, or have been advised to quarantine or self-isolate. [Full story...]

Sight Cymru are extending their services

Sight Cymru have successfully been awarded funding from Welsh Government VSEF. [Full story...]

Sense and RNIB join forces to provide Sense Information and Advice Service

Sense, the charity supporting people with dual sensory loss, and RNIB will be working together to deliver a telephone and email-based information and advice service, The Sense Information and Advice Service. [Full story...]

Changes to Disability Living Allowance (DLA)

LOOK UK is warning parents of 15-year-olds who are in receipt of DLA that they will be getting letters from the Department of Work and Pensions regarding the need to migrate from DLA to Personal Independence Payment (PIP). [Full story...]

'Come and see RNC' - on film

Royal National College for the Blind (RNC) is the leading College for young people aged 16-25 with a visual impairment in the UK, and applications are now open for 2021. As with most schools and colleges across the country, it will be difficult to plan tours, visits and open days at the College this year, with the ever changing Covid-19 regulations. With that in mind, RNC has commissioned a short film entitled ‘Come and see RNC’ to give prospective students and their families a brief overview of what is available to them. It also showcases some of our incredible facilities. [Full story...]

Glaucoma UK campaign encourages safe screen use

For National Eye Health Week 2020, Glaucoma UK has launched a campaign to reassure people with glaucoma and dry eye that they can to use screens, and gives advice on how to do so safely. [Full story...]

Changes to coronavirus regulations

The Welsh Government has announced changes to the The Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) Regulations 2020, which came into effect on 14th September. They include the requirement to wear face coverings in indoor public spaces, such as shops, but with certain exemptions and exceptions. [Full story...]

Macular Society Conference sessions available to view

The Macular Society's virtual conference is now over, but the sessions are available to view on the society's website. [Full story...]

Fight for Sight to conduct research into diabetic retinopathy and Covid-19

Fight for Sight is partnering with Diabetes UK to investigate if people with the eye disease diabetic retinopathy are at greater risk of developing complications from Covid-19. [Full story...]

Changes to Access to Work during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak

The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) has announced further changes to the process of claiming the Access to Work benefit during the pandemic. [Full story...]

A-Level success for students at RNC and New College Worcester

Congratulations to students at the Royal National College of the Blind and at New College Worcester on their A-Level results. [Full story...]

Guide Dogs 'Buddy Dogs' service to be rolled out in Wales

Guide Dogs is now rolling out the Buddy Dog service throughout Wales. [Full story...]

Updated information on Low Vision Service Wales

The information concerning LVSW has been updated. [Full story...]

Public Health Wales guidance on guiding, social distancing and hygiene

Public Health Wales has written supplementary guidance to SightAdviceFAQ pages on coronavirus. [Full story...]

Fight for Sight funding new studies into Charles Bonnet Syndrome

Fight for Sight is to fund two new research projects into Charles Bonnet Syndrome (CBS), which causes visual hallucinations in people with sight loss. [Full story...]

TV Licence - blind concession

From 1st August 2020, people aged over 75 years will no longer be eligible for a free TV licence, unless they are in receipt of Pension Credit. However, if you are blind (severely sight impaired) and can provide the appropriate evidence, you are eligible to apply for a 50% concession. [Full story...]

Pause to shielding in Wales - Foodbox leaflet

Following the announcement that shielding will be paused in Wales on 16th August, leaflets will be put in food boxes from 3rd August onwards to notify recipients of when they will be finishing and alternative ways to get food. [Full story...]

Concerns raised about introduction of e-scooters

RNIB Cymru has raised concerns about the impact of the use of e-scooters on people with a vision impairment. [Full story...]

Call for more 'Esme's Friends' telephone groups

Judith Potts, founder of Esme's Umbrella, the organisation for people affected by Charles Bonnet Syndrome (CBS), is calling on local, regional and national sight loss charities to create their own version of Esme’s Friends – a telephone chat service for people living with the condition, which causes visual hallucinations. [Full story...]

Pause to shielding in Wales from 16th August

The Welsh Government has announced that shielding advice will be ‘paused’ from 16th August. This means that, if Coronavirus levels keep going down, many vulnerable and older people will have more freedom to leave their homes. [Full story...]

Face masks are now compulsory on public transport in Wales

From Monday 27th July, it is compulsory for people in Wales to wear face coverings on public transport and in taxis. [Full story...]

Phone First - for A&E care in Cardiff and Vale University Health Board

People will be asked to phone first before going to A&E as emergency services are remodeled to respond to coronavirus. This new approach is been trialled in Cardiff and the Vale University Health Board from 5th August. The 999 emergency service is not affected. [Full story...]

Welsh Government to extend video consultations to optometry

Following the introduction of video consultations by General Practitioners as a result of the pandemic, the Welsh Government has announced that video consultation services will be extended to opticians, dental practices, and community pharmacies. [Full story...]

Interview with Sight Life's Chairman

You can listen to an interview with John Sanders, Chairman of Sight Life (formerly Cardiff Institute for the Blind) online. [Full story...]

Research news from The Macular Society

The Macular Society has news on various research projects of interest to people with sight loss. [Full story...]

Taxi company in Swansea contracted by the health board for patients attending hospital appointments

Swansea Bay Health Board have contracted a taxi firm for patients to attend hospital appointments. [Full story...]

Macular Week 2020 highlights the impact of macular disease and importance of research

This year's Macular Week was Monday 22nd to Sunday 28th June. The Macular Society highlighted the impact of the condition, and also the urgent need for more funding for research to find a cure. Nearly 1.5million people in the UK have macular disease, and it can affect people of all ages. [Full story...]

Vision Support has identified their top 5 mindfulness apps

The team at Vision Support has identified their top 5 mindfulness apps [Full story...]

People 'afraid to seek treatment' for eye problems

Concerns have been raised recently that, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, people are reluctant to seek treatment for serious conditions. Now a report on BBC Wales has highlighted the problem that people with serious eye problems are risking their sight because of a reluctance to leave their homes. [Full story...]

IGA advice on DVLA visual field tests during pandemic

The International Glaucoma Association (IGA) has issued advice to people with the condition who are concerned about the availability of DVLA visual field tests during the current restrictions. [Full story...]

Update on eyecare appointments in Wales from RNIB Cymru

RNIB Cymru has an update on the situation regarding eye care appointments in Wales, with particular reference to the measures that are being put in place to ensure that, if a hospital visit is essential, patients can be kept safe. [Full story...]

Mental Health Awareness Week - 18th to 24th May 2020

For Mental Health Awareness Week, we have some information on sources of support. [Full story...]

Uber to be prosecuted for refusing to take guide dogs

Cardiff-based social entrepreneur Dan Williams, with support from the Equality and Human Rights Commission, is bringing a case against the multinational ride-hailing company Uber as a result of over 100 refusals to pick him and his guide dog up. [Full story...]

Guide dog training impacted by lockdown

A feature on the BBC website looks at how the current lockdown, with the lack of traffic and closure of venues such as shops and cafes, has made it difficult to train new guide dogs. This may result in vision impaired people having to wait longer for a dog - there are currently 59 people on the waiting list in Wales. [Full story...]

Welsh Government provides assurances to The Macular Society

The Macular Society has asked each of the UK administrations for assurances that sight-saving injections continue to be a priority during the coronavirus crisis. The Welsh and Scottish Governments have now responded. [Full story...]

New telephone number for Retina UK

The telephone number of the Retina UK helpline has changed - the new number is 0300 111 4000. The helpline provides support and information for people with inherited sight loss, their relatives and anyone who wants to know more about these conditions. [Full story...]

Optometry Practices open in each Welsh health board during the Coronavirus lockdown.

Eye Care Wales has produced a list of optometry practices which are open for urgent eye care during the corona virus crisis. [Full story...]

Covid-19 and Charles Bonnet Syndrome

Judith Potts, founder of the support group for Charles Bonnet Syndrome, has warned that, for some people with the condition, the added stress of the current corona virus situation and the extra isolation have caused an upsurge in the number and frequency of hallucinations with which they live. [Full story...]

Macular Society says urgent eye treatments must continue

The Macular Society is concerned that urgent, sight saving injections may be delayed as a result of the corona virus pandemic and has written to health ministers and NHS chiefs in all parts of the UK to ensure that they continue to be a priority during the crisis. [Full story...]

Alström Patient Registry goes live

Alström Syndrome UK (ASUK) has announced that the Patient Registry is now live, and is asking people affected by the condition to provide information. This will be used to build a worldwide picture of Alström Syndrome, improving global knowledge and understanding and leading to an increase in interest from researchers. It is an opportunity to make a real difference to everyone living with Alström now and in the future. [Full story...]

Corona virus - Macular Society advice on eye clinic appointments

The Macular Society has issued advice to people who are concerned about attending appointments at the eye clinic while the corona virus is spreading. [Full story...]

Pilot project to provide eye care closer to home in Wales

A pilot project funded by the Welsh Government will enable patients with certain eye conditions to be treated at one of five high street optometry practices. The pilot will last for 12 months, and is being launched by Cardiff and Vale University Health Board. [Full story...]

EU Settlement Scheme - Support for people with disabilities

If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, you and your family can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK after 30 June 2021. If your application is successful, you’ll get either settled or pre-settled status. In Wales, the organisation MIND is providing support to disabled people (and those with other special needs) who wish to make an application under the scheme. [Full story...]

Welsh Government funding to support disabled people after Brexit

The Welsh Government is providing funding to Disability Wales for a project which will support disabled people during the transition period following UK's departure from the European Union on 31st January. [Full story...]

New Glaucoma Ophthalmic Diagnostic Teaching and Treatment Centre opens in Cardiff

Vaughan Gething AM, Minister for Health and Social Services in the Welsh government, has opened a new Glaucoma Ophthalmic Diagnostic Teaching and Treatment Centre (ODTTC) at Cardiff University's School of Optometry and Vision Sciences. [Full story...]

RNIB forces change to tax decision by HMRC

RNIB has successfully challenged a decision by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) related to the Blind Person’s Tax Allowance. [Full story...]

UK Government announces package of measures to tackle disability discrimination

The Prime minister has announced a range of new measures aimed at ensuring that disabled people can participate fully in society. [Full story...]

Fight for Sight partnering with Welsh Government to fund research

Fight for Sight, the eye research charity, is inviting applications for project grants for research that aims to address sight loss caused by any eye condition. The charity has partnered with Health and Care Research Wales and the Chief Optometric Adviser for Wales to offer a joint Project Grant Award to an eligible Host Institution based within Wales. Applications are particularly encouraged in the fields of myopia and corneal disease. [Full story...]

WARNING - Scam targeting vision impaired people

A colleague at Deafblind Cymru has warned us about a scam targeting people who receive bank statements by audio CD. [Full story...]

Giant cell arteritis - know the signs

A report on BBC2's programme 'Trust me, I'm a doctor' raised awareness of the condition giant cell arteritis (GCA) which can develop very quickly, and lead to sight loss. [Full story...]