Day One Appeal
Today 250 people will be diagnosed with sight loss. Today is day one on their sight loss journey.
I'm Alba and I'm proud to be an Eye Care Liaison Officer (ECLO also known as Eye Clinic Liaison Officer).
I give people the immediate emotional and practical support they need to face the future with confidence after a sight loss diagnosis. As someone born blind, I've never let my sight loss hold me back. I'm a busy Mum of two, I’ve travelled the world, worked abroad, and I even once competed in the Women’s Giant Slalom at the Paralympics, skiing down a mountain at great speed. It was perhaps the most terrifying moment of my life! Now I work with people who've lost their sight, and that means more to me than medals ever could. Will you help me provide urgent support for people on day one of their sight loss diagnosis?
How ECLOs change lives
When people come into our office, they are often distressed and frightened. Being diagnosed with sight loss can mean things they took for granted are lost in an instant. Often, people aren’t even allowed to drive home from their diagnosis, as their car keys and licence are confiscated immediately.
That loss of independence can be sudden and traumatic.
Meet one of my patients, Josie
After her sight loss diagnosis, Josie lost her confidence and stopped seeing her friends. When I met her, we took the time to speak about how this had affected her and I referred her to our mobility officers.
I'm thrilled to say she's now learned how to go out by herself and has met other people with sight loss, who’ve shown her it’s not the end of the world – just the start of a whole new chapter.
Like Josie, many people I see simply have no idea of their future and need immediate emotional and practical support to cope.
How you can help
With your help, we can provide a safe space where people feel listened to and understood the day they receive their diagnosis. My patients are so relieved that they even say, “Wow, I feel like you know what I'm talking about!” I’m proud of being able to make that happen.
By making a donation, you'll make it possible for ECLOs like me to continue to provide just that – help to feel confident and in control from day one.
So, will you help us change the lives of more people like Josie?
How your donations help
could enable our advisers to answer a call to the Sight Loss Support Helpline.
could help a person with sight loss join a Talk and Support group session, enabling them to connect with others living with Sight Loss.
could help an Eye Care Liaison Officer provide practical and emotional guidance to a patient coming to terms with the diagnosis of a sight condition.