RNIB Scotland has secured almost £400,000 from the Big Lottery Fund to help blind and partially sighted children and young people and their families.
The £395,854 grant, awarded in March, will pay for two early intervention family workers in West and Central Scotland to give vital emotional and practical support to help families of children newly diagnosed with vision impairment.
Education and family services manager Dominic Everett said: "For many parents, learning that their child has a visual impairment can be a huge shock. It can be a hugely difficult and emotional time. The most common question they ask is ‘what can my child see, and what can I do to help?
“This award will allow us to help families to enable their child to maximise their personal independence. The right play strategies can help them to improve their social skills, make sense of their environment, and improve their confidence.
“This project will make our early engagement with families even more personalised and effective.”
Tara Spiers from Aberdeenshire whose daughter, 11 year-old Lorna, has sight loss, said RNIB Scotland had been a crucial source of information, support and hope.
"They have provided key information on ways to tackle educational issues and valuable links to other families going through the same problems," she said. "Thanks to them, my daughter became a proficient white cane-user at the age of nine which increased her confidence greatly. Just knowing RNIB is at the other end of a phone is a massive security blanket for us.”
The new service will also offer much more one-to-one support to parents and siblings at home or getting out and about.
Find out more about family support from RNIB Scotland.
For family support in Wales contact RNIB Cymru’s children and families service.
Check out support for children and families from RNIB Northern Ireland.
Read more Insight News.