As the country has now moved in to another national lockdown, we felt it was necessary to share an update on our services and support that is available and what we are doing to help at this time.
Since March our Resource Centre has remained closed to the public; we took this decision to keep it this way over the summer for several reasons:
- We have a small staff team, several of whom are either vulnerable or rely on extensive use of public transport to access the resource centre
- The time and resources we would need to spend on making the resource centre safe meant we would be unable to focus on our other important services
- We wanted to take this time to focus on recruiting volunteers for telephone befriending ready for the winter
Although we are not seeing people face-to-face we are still able to access Bradbury Lodge to send and receive items in the post, if there is something you need or even want to have an over the phone/online demonstration please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Equipment can still be ordered, either directly through us or through some of our trusted suppliers. We now have our large print 2021 diaries and calendars available.
We will be making another series of courtesy calls to see how people are doing, this is a very long list of people so do bear with us. The aim of our calls is to
- Check on the individual to see how they are coping during the lockdown
- To ensure they have support from their local community
- To offer a regular friendly phone call from a volunteer
- To offer our newsletter to them if they wish to receive it
We will also be contacting many of our children, young peole and families at this time to stay connected and to offfer our support.
We’re just a phone call away!
Our helpline is still open and you can call us for anything related to visual impairment, or just for a chat, our friendly team are always willing to talk and to assist in anyway they can. If you can’t get through straight away, please do leave a message and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. Call us on 01865 725595.
We have recently recruited several new volunteers to our team of telephone befrienders, they are trained and ready to call people on a regular basis. A telephone befriender can call for:
- A general chat and catch up
- Play games and quizzes over the phone
- Read a book, newspaper or magazine
This service is open to anyone who is visually impaired, or a carer/family member of a visually impaired person, they must also be over the age of 18. Our Telephone Befrienders are fully trained and DBS checked.
If you’d like to receive a regular call or refer someone please call 01865 725595 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Online and Telephone Social Activities
Our ActivEyes group meet once a week on Zoom for a social event, why not join in or find out more by joining our ActivEyes Oxfordshire Faebook Group or emailing email@example.com.
We also have several telephone social groups across the county, contact us for more information.
Technology is playing an important part in our lives during the pandemic, but many people may feel they’re being left behind or they are struggling to get to grips with a new piece of tech. We can:
- Advice on the best tech solutions that suit your needs
- Provide over the phone or online demonstrations of equipment
- Talk through set up of devices
- Discuss the latest apps and software that is available
We’re here to assist you with your technology needs, contact us today to find out more.
The lockdown can cause great strain for many people, for some you may find it ok just to chat to someone on the phone regularly, but for others more professional help is needed. Our counsellor is on hand to speak with you and make further arrangements for telephone sessions. Contact us to find out more.
Worried about being alone on Christmas Day?
We’re here for you over the Christmas period, if you are likely to be alone on Christmas Day or around the holiday season, do get in touch, we can arrange for a telephone chat from one of the team. If you or someone you know would like to receive a call, contact us.
We still have some useful resources on our Covid-19 page, do go over and take a look. We’ll be working hard over the next few months to support you and to speak up for visually impaired people across Oxfordshire.
Do take care and stay safe, we are here for you.
The OAB Team.