Royal London Society for Blind People
In January last year I noticed that I was having difficulties reading emails and was having to squint to read small text. This was unusual for me as I had perfect vision my whole life. I immediately went to an optician and expected to be given glasses, but instead I was rushed to hospital because it turned out that I had profound vision loss in one eye...
When I first heard about the Ultrabike I couldn't quite believe it. It seemed like something out of legend, a dream turning reality. A bike with ultrasonic sensors that could guide blind and partially sighted cyclists? I had to find out more.
I often dash to my phone to check out a new notification and find that I've been tagged in yet another photo on Facebook. I always feel slight trepidation when this happens, because I don't know what's in that picture. I don't know how I look, and I can't join in the following conversation that the picture inevitably sparks off among friends.
New research by national sight loss charity RNIB has revealed that 17,000 vision impaired people of working age look set to be displaced from their homes as a result of the Bedroom Tax. Stuck between a rock and a hard place, they will have to choose between relocating or losing a portion of their benefits (which will be on average £14 a week; a sizeable sum when you are already struggling to make ends meet).
For many vision impaired young people, despite having the same kind of hopes and ambitions as others, they don't have the self-belief or independence to fulfill them. Judging by research we have conducted, the impact of sight loss on quality of life can be seen as early as seven.
Celebrating National Braille Week: Digital Exhibition Charts Lives of Blind Young People Over the Last Two Centuries
Louis Braille, his life and achievements, will be remembered and celebrated this week as part of National Braille Week. Braille was 15 when he developed his tactile code for the French alphabet in 1824, so it is quite remarkable when one imagines what an impact his work has had.
The stats speak for themselves: 40% of blind and partially sighted young people don't have any local friends to play with, and 80% say that they have little hope for what life holds. We believe a quarter of blind children under the age of 12 are depressed.