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Ansley’s blog: Whatever you’re facing, RNIB is here

2020 was a difficult year for everyone. Though there is hope on the horizon, starting 2021 in lockdown is not how most people wanted to ring in the New Year. It’s understandable that many of us are feeling down and in need of a little extra emotional support.

The situation is especially challenging for the 121,000 blind and partially sighted people living in Wales. Many have faced anxiety, sadness and even fear about the unique challenges they have experienced – such as problems social distancing, difficulty shopping without guidance and isolation from losing tactile contact with friends and family during lockdown.

We’ve spent the past 10 months speaking to blind and partially sighted people across Wales who are concerned about what’s in store over the next few months. The resurgence of COVID, along with continued social distancing challenges and a higher prevalence of depression among people with sight loss, means that an extra focus on wellbeing is crucial at this time.

That’s why RNIB launched Emergency Mental Health Sessions for local blind and partially sighted people in October.

The sessions are completely free and offer people with sight loss the opportunity to speak to a counsellor for an hour over the phone about however they are feeling and any problems that are on their mind. It doesn’t have to be about their sight at all.

We know that the next few months might be tough for many, so we want to remind you that RNIB is here to help. If you or someone you know could benefit from speaking to someone, please call our Helpline on 0303 123 9999. We can set up a chat within 36 hours and the service can be used as many times as needed. 

No one with sight loss has to suffer on their own. Blind and partially sighted people deserve the same expectation of mental wellbeing as everyone else. That’s why RNIB Cymru will always be here.