The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has launched a new campaign to raise awareness of the need for sight loss advisers in hospital eye departments.
Launched this week (15 September), the ‘See the need, demand support’ campaign has recruited celebrity support, with portrait photographer Alistair Morrison snapping celebrities including Dame Shirley Bassey, Barbara Windsor and Neil Morrissey.
The charity aims to raise awareness of the need for a sight loss adviser, or eye clinic liaison officer (ECLOs), in every eye clinic and hospital eye department across the UK, who are trained to offer emotional support and practical advice to people in the UK losing their sight.
Commenting on the new campaign, the RNIB’s director of engagement, Fazilet Hadi, said: “Every 15 minutes someone in the UK starts to lose their sight and shamefully thousands of people are left without any emotional or practical support, to help them face the future without fear.”
Ms Fazilet added: “Being told that you are losing your sight can be devastating, you may have worries about how you will cope with work, family responsibilities and life in general. No one should have to face sight loss alone or without the support they need to live their life with confidence. That’s why the RNIB is asking everyone to demand that people have access to sight loss advisers in every eye department in the UK.”
The campaign will include advertisements on radio, billboards and VOD (video on demand) services, as well as using the #SeeTheNeed hash tag on social media.
Chief executive of the RNIB, Lesley-Anne Alexander, said on Twitter: “#SeeTheNeed is simple: the lack of access to sight loss advisers is simply not good enough. We demand more.”