Sight loss charity starts young people’s project.
Sight Life is starting a project for people with sight loss between the ages of 18 and 25 across Cardiff, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Neath Port Talbot and Swansea. The aim is to help the many young vision impaired (VI) people who struggle with education, employment, and finding services or recreational or social activities that meet or understand their needs.
Thanks to funding from the Powell Family Foundation, our Young Person’s project will provide support to upskill and enable young VI people to be confident, successful, ambitious, conspicuous and connected. We aim to encourage them to be autonomous and active participants in all that they do and want to do.
Our aim is to get more 18 – 25-year-olds with any form of sight loss involved in supportive groups to do the activities that they want to do or try. We want to encourage them to meet others, make new friends and talk about the issues that matter to them.
Natalie Moore, the lead for this project, said:
“Young people tell us this programme will help to develop their self-confidence, build self-esteem and at the same time gain the practical skills and experience they seek”.
“Young people also tell us they want to be in the lead. Whilst we’ll start by providing some activities, events and groups, we want to encourage young people in our areas to start their own groups based on their interests and what matters to them.”
We are also looking for young people with sight loss who are interested in becoming mentors and befrienders for others.
Natalie said: “We know from years of experience that peer group support — speaking to others who face similar sight loss issues — really helps everyone involved. So, we will develop a bank of mentoring volunteers who in turn will help others and in doing so gain valuable experience themselves.”
Sight Life CEO Rich Harvey said:
“We are extremely grateful to the Powell Family Foundation for their support. We have a brilliant track record of running excellent groups and services that improve everyone’s well-being. Our goal now is to reach out to more young people and learn what we need to do or change to help and encourage them to thrive and support each other.”
We are looking to run our first chat session about the project on 31st July at 1pm. This will be an online session. Please contact Natalie for details about how to join. [email protected]
We will also be recruiting new mentor volunteers in the coming months. Register your interest with us or ask to find out more about becoming a mentor, by emailing [email protected]
Notes for editors
About Sight Life
Sight Life (formerly Cardiff Institute for the Blind) supports people who are blind or partially sighted in south Wales. In 2020/21 we helped more than 3,000 people in Cardiff, Swansea, RCT (Rhondda Cynon Taf), Neath and Port Talbot.
We provide statutory services to people with sight loss on behalf of the local Councils in Cardiff and Swansea.
In cooperation with the NHS, we provide a support service (ECLO: Eye Clinic Liaison Officer) for patients newly diagnosed with sight loss in University Hospital of Wales (UHW “The Heath”) in Cardiff.
Our aims are to ensure that people with sight loss can take part in all aspects of society, including work and leisure.
We offer a range of training, clubs and activities including audio-described theatre trips, confidence building, cooking, drama, employment support, fitness, gardening, IT, music, photography, rambling and yoga to people with sight loss.
Established in 1865, we are one of Wales’ oldest charities. In spring 2022 we returned to being an independent charity after being part of the UK wide RNIB Group since 2009.
We have approximately a dozen staff and annual income in the region of £440,000 from statutory contracts, grants, trusts, The National Lottery, donations and legacies.
Sight Life changed its name from Cardiff Institute for the Blind in 2019 to reflect the fact that we work beyond Cardiff, including Swansea and RCT (Rhondda Cynon Taf). The name change also recognises the fact that we support people with any degree of sight loss, not only those who are blind.
Natalie Moore: [email protected]
Telephone 02920 398900