Super Saver: Grants


(12 February 2021 12:00 am)

Written by Kate Perkins, Super Saver

Advances in technology have helped many users of our services with sight loss, so it was no surprise when I was asked to apply for an IT grant to help Paul Proctor, who has recently lost his sight. Having become sight impaired quickly, Paul craved more independence and felt that an iPad would help him to achieve this.

I approached Barchester’s Charitable Foundation, a registered charity that helps older people as well as other adults with a disability throughout the UK. They particularly support applications that combat loneliness and enable people to engage with their community and the wider world. Paul was an ideal candidate, as his world had shrunk overnight and he was increasingly reliant upon other people.  It was a 6 week wait to see if our application was successful, which thankfully it was!

Obviously seeing a screen is only one way to experience an iPad, but with voice activation it has meant that Paul can navigate the iPad without assistance.  Once our Support Centres are back up and running Paul is hoping to have an appointment with Ruth, our IT Support Officer, to be shown other functions that the iPad can offer him.

I spoke with Paul approximately 6 weeks after he received his iPad. He said it had made a huge difference to his life. As he is severely sight impaired it has helped massively with his independence, he is able communicate by e-mail more easily, listen to the news and talking newspapers as well as listen to films and music without having to ask for help or assistance.
 
Another big bonus for Paul is that he has been able to participate on Zoom calls and join in discussion forums, which he would not have been able to do previously. Now with his new-gained confidence using the iPad, he is hoping to explore RNIB’s talking books and discover the world of audio books.

We are hugely grateful to the charities that offer these grants that enable us support people and make such a difference for them.

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