Here we hear from Sue who describes how KVIN has supported her during lockdown;
I’m Sue, I have retinitis pigmentosa and am registered blind. During lockdown I have become total isolated because I live on my own. I can’t socialise and see family because places are closed, and everyone is self-isolating. I can’t get to KVIN drop-in groups in Dewsbury or Huddersfield as these have closed for now. I felt devastated when lockdown first started.
Over the years I have had lots of help from KVIN, I learnt how to use an iPhone and regularly go to their social drop-in groups where I get to meet other people with sight loss. We can share tips and support each other.
Now we are in lockdown KVIN have been doing Zoom chats, it’s a lovely social thing making a big difference to me. I can join the group calls, hear people’s voices and have a chat. It makes you feel as if you’re still part of society.
During the calls we have been exchanging tips, especially in getting shopping deliveries. When this first happened, it was hard to get delivery slots and Visually impaired people weren’t on the priority lists. We shared tips and phone numbers to call for supermarkets which now means we can get priority delivery spots. There are KVIN volunteers who can get shopping for us, but I wanted to be able to maintain my independence and do the shopping myself online.
KVIN have also been sharing information about technology, they have made some podcasts about how to get audiobooks i.e. RNIB audio service and audible which is useful. I’ve also learnt how to get onto internet radio. All these things are great.
Anything that people bring up that they are having an issue with, there is usually someone with a solution in the group.