David Taylor, Editor of Losing My Sight Magazine, sits down to tell us how losing his job as a result of sight loss inspired him to start the magazine, and why he’s looking for people to join the project.
Having lost my job due to my sight loss back in 2014 I was not in a great state of mind for many months, and if it was not for support from Action for Blind People and RNIB I could honestly say I may not have been here today.
Contemplating what to do with the rest of my life I finally came up with the idea of producing a quarterly magazine aimed mainly for people with sight loss.
I began planning my project on 1 January 2016, and I must tell you I had many sleepless nights thinking about it and how to go about producing this magazine. It was not until the end of January I was advised to contact Portsmouth University to seek help from students who would like to contribute on a voluntary basis, thus helping them with their grades.
I had one response from a guy who offered his services to help build the website and put the magazine together every three months, which is a great help. I also have a young man who is visually impaired and is my voluntary sports editor. Doing this will in the future help him gain employment with a newspaper one day.
The magazine covers subjects from Politics to Sport and everything in-between. We aim to provide useful information to anyone with sight loss and their partners and families, so they can deal with their disability. Some of the articles are about holiday ideas and cooking recipes and eye care.
Recently we have become an official partner with Hampshire Football Association and are now on the Football League Database for the English Football League, so we can now cover football matches. We also have a YouTube Channel and are on Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr.
All this since March! Our readers at present are from the UK, USA, Poland, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Canada, Philippines and China. Initially the magazine was only aimed for the Portsmouth area, but I quickly realised other people around the country would like to read it as well. I did not imagine readers from outside the UK would also be interested.
As we grow we would love to have volunteers who would like to send in articles on any subject they like. As long as it is not obscene or racist, if you think you could contribute please contact me on the details provided. We would like to hear about your sight loss and how you deal with it, or how your family copes, or do you have any issues with taxis or bus companies, or any holiday ideas or suggestions. As I have said: anything you want to talk about then let me know.
My plan is to make the magazine a monthly issue rather than quarterly, but I cannot do this alone.