A celebration marking the successes of RNIB’s (Royal National Institute of Blind People) Optimeyes project took place at the Royal Station Hotel Hull on Friday 31 March 2017.
Supported by the Big Lottery Fund, Optimeyes identified older people experiencing problems with their vision and referred them to local health, social and charity services in Yorkshire and South Lincolnshire
To mark the project’s second birthday beneficiaries and local organisations gathered to share their achievements. There were presentations and demonstrations of activities including Paralympic sports target shooting and Boccia. Members of the South Yorkshire Fire Service also talked about their involvement in the project.
Optimeyes was run by RNIB in partnership with six other local organisations including:
Selby District Vision
Sheffield Royal Society for the Blind
Sight Support Rydale
South Lincolnshire Blind Society
York Blind and Partially Sighted Society
The project is now drawing to a close following two years of work. The established projects and activities will continue to be run by the local charities.
Claire Cawkwell, RNIB project manager of Optimeyes, said:
“RNIB is delighted to have worked with all of the local organisations involved in the Optimeyes project. A lot has been achieved over the past two years, from a garden being created by blind and partially sighted people to fire service staff being trained to carry out a simple sight screening test.
“Optimeyes has been a fantastic project to work on and I look forward to seeing the activities continue to grow from strength to strength, benefiting local blind and partially sighted people.”
Brian Nicholson, who has sight loss and was involved in the Optimeyes garden project, said:
“Being involved in the Optimeyes project has been great for me. I feel so much more engaged in my local community and it gets me out of the house.
“My confidence has grown. Before this I didn’t have other people to talk to about what it’s like losing your sight.”