A new organisation in the West of England is being launched in May to provide direct and consistent services to blind and partially sighted people across Bristol, Bath, South Gloucester, Swindon and Wiltshire.
Vision West of England will work closely with key partners including Visionary, other local sight loss charities, national organisations, statutory bodies and most importantly blind and partially sighted people on developing services that respond sensitively and positively to the needs of visually impaired people and those at risk of losing their sight.
The organisation is receiving support and advice from Thomas Pocklington Trust and Wiltshire Sight. There will be two hubs in Bristol and Wiltshire where direct services will be based.
Vision West of England will work with partners towards developing a single point of contact for blind and partially sighted people across this area within the South West region, ensuring that visually impaired people have a voice. It will also work closely with Visionary, the local sight loss membership organisation, to align with their ongoing initiative to develop and provide good practice guidance for the delivery of services across the whole of the UK.
Leanne Hubbard, currently CEO of Wiltshire Sight, will take up the post of Interim CEO of Vision West of England.
Speaking about the new organisation, Leanne said:
“Our goal is to provide support for visually impaired people and those at risk of losing their sight, that aims to give them increased choice, improved access to the right services and support that will have a positive impact on their quality of life and independence.
“We will also collaborate with our partners on strengthening our knowledge of the causes of sight loss and how the effects of eyesight problems can be alleviated.”
Leanne added: “We will offer a range of services from our 2 dedicated Hubs for visually impaired people, their families and carers. Those services will include information, advice and support; peer and family support; resources and technology; social activities; advocacy and training.
“I’m very keen to speak to visually impaired people and people from partner organisations about the new organisation and how it will operate. Anyone who has any questions or feedback is welcome to contact me or the team either by email or phone.”
The team can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or via 01380 723682