Introduction to our services

For many years the charity has helped visually impaired people to access the printed word. Our main object is the provision of specialised or specially adapted electronic equipment and the teaching of its use. However, over the past 10 to 15 years, raising money for the provision of equipment for individuals, 90% of which is computers, occupied almost all of our time.

We realise, however, that the gift of a computer is all very well, but the amount of benefit derived by the recipient depends on a number of factors. Modern computers are optimised for the sighted world. Windowsâ„¢ operating systems are highly visual and not necessarily intuitive or easy to use. Learning to use a computer takes a great deal of personal effort, commitment and time. It takes even more for those who often have many other things to contend with in their daily life as a blind person. We want to do something positive to help the learning process.

For five years we helped in an informal way with telephone and email support. There have been some notable successes but the Equipment Service was so resource intensive we did not have the time or funds to formalise our support activities. We revamped the way we provide equipment and a new service started on 1 April 2003 with a greatly simplified process. This will release sufficient staff time to allow us to start to introduce new services.