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RNIB services are still available in Edinburgh

Blind and partially sighted people are still able to access services from sight loss charity RNIB Scotland, whose main office is based in Edinburgh.

"In the current period of uncertainty and confusion it is more important than ever that those who are among the most vulnerable in society still have confidence that they have help and support," said the charity's director James Adams.

Currently, around 170,000 people are living in Scotland with significant sight loss. Although most are over the age of 60, around 3,500 children and young people also have a visual impairment.

"First, and most importantly, our helpline is still open on 0303 123 9999," said Mr Adams. "This can give advice and information and refer people on to other services.

"Information on issues of concern to people with sight loss will also continue to be broadcast, as well as entertainment programmes, by our Connect Radio station, available on Freeview 730 or online. RNIB's Talking Book library can still post or download the thousands of titles we have available in audio and other formats."

The social work service that the charity offers in Edinburgh, East Lothian and Midlothian can be contacted on 0131 652 3140 on Mondays to Fridays, between 9am until 12 noon. However, staff will not be undertaking any home visits unless these are clearly identified as an emergency.

The Connect Café based in the main office is closed, as is the Resource Centre, although products can still be purchased online. Advice and reassurance to people diagnosed with sight loss will still be available by telephone and email on Monday to Thursday between 9am - 4.45pm, and on Friday from 9am - 4.30pm.

"We know this is an especially trying time for everyone, especially those who are most disadvantaged," said Mr Adams. "But RNIB Scotland will be here for blind and partially sighted people and their families and carers. We are pressing to ensure that all official information is available in accessible formats and that the particular needs of those with sight loss are taken fully into account.

"We want people with sight loss to know they are not alone and that help is available."