On Friday RP Fighting Blindness hosted an Information Day in Leeds. It was a fun day with more than 80 people coming together to listen to our speakers and network.
We were supported by Leeds Society for Deaf & Blind, a local charity which has been supporting people with sight and / or hearing impairments for 150 years. The charity kindly allowed us to use their function rooms to hold our event and provided volunteers to help make the day go smoothly. Jo Reveley, the organisation’s Chief Officer hosted the event and provided a presentation on the services offered locally.
I was joined by my colleagues Matthew Carr, Regional Service Manager for Central & Wales Region, and Clair Pudaruth, our Volunteer Coordinator both of whom were on hand to talk to people about the work of the charity and offer support as needed. It was lovely to welcome so many faces, both familiar and new, from the surrounding areas.
We were keen to keep a local focus for the day and were joined by two respected Consultant Ophthalmologists, Professor Martin McKibben and Dr Raj Mukherjee from St James Hospital in Leeds. They spoke about genetics and the increasing importance and availability of genetic testing and about current research that is taking place into therapies for various inherited retinal dystrophies. The audience was provided with an opportunity to put their own questions to our medics, which everyone enjoyed and took advantage of.
As well as hearing about the fantastic research that is taking place and the hope for the future, we also heard from a number of local sight loss charities about the support they offer locally and Leeds & Bradford rehabilitation teams spoke about mobility and cane training. We also heard two patients talk about their emotional and inspirational journeys of living with inherited sight loss.
It was an informative day, which everyone enjoyed. We have our next Information Day of the year coming up in Falkirk on Monday 10th September; anyone interested in attending this event should contact the office on 01280 821334 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Regional Service Manager – North West & Ireland