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Mobile Resource Unit

To improve our service provision to people with deteriorating vision who live some distance from our Resource Centre in Inverness we have introduced a Mobile Resource Unit.

The Unit will carry an extensive range of aids and equipment specially designed for use by people with poor vision.

The Unit will display a wide range of kitchen equipment from simple liquid level indicators to talking weighing scales to a demonstration talking microwave oven.

Also on display will be large button telephones, a variety of writing aids, clocks and watches, and many other pieces of equipment to enhance daily living skills, improve safety and retain independence.

There is a computer workstation connected to a text scanner, which produces large print voice synthesised output. A photocopier with enlarging facility will allow personal materials, such as household accounts, knitting patterns, letters to continue to be read by individuals at home.

A small room has been set up with a wide selection of low vision aids and lighting. People wishing to be assessed for magnifiers can have this carried out at the Unit in complete privacy. This can be linked to other equipment such as task lighting, lecterns, clip boards. A demonstration "Eezee Reader" allows text to be enlarged on your own television screen.

The Unit will also carry a wide range of information in large print, braille and tape.

The Unit will call at Communities throughout the Region several times a year. You can drop in to see the equipment and meet and talk with trained staff. If you are unable to visit us for assessment it may be possible to arrange for the Resource Centre to call on you at home.


For further information or to find out when it may be in your area, please telephone the Resource Centre on 01463 233663.


We look forward to hearing from you.




We can help!

Help you to understand your eye condition, what has gone wrong and what you can now expect from your vision. We can give you advice on dealing with your visual problems. You can talk to us of your feelings about failing vision and we can answer any qustions you may have about this but may have been afraid or unable to ask.

We Can!

Help you remain independent, showing you ways of undertaking everyday tasks in and around your home.

We Can!

Give you advice on magnifiers and low vision aids that might help you to read more easily whilst giving you the opportunity to try these out in your own home. We can combine this with advice on lighting around your home and may suggest ways that this could be improved to help you to overcome some of the problems imposed by poor vision.

We Can!

Help you to move about freely, independently and safely both indoors and out by giving you advice and if necessary arranging training.

We Can!

Help you with reading and writing difficulties by introducing you to large print, taped newspapers and library facilities and, if necessary, teach Braille or Moon. there is a range of aids to help you overcome the difficulties of writing.

We Can!

Provide you with information about educational and employment matters.

We Can!

Ensure you are receiving all financial benefits to which you are entitled.

We Can!

Help with ideas for leisure and recreation that might be of interest to you and show you new ways of keeping up with your favourite hobby.

We Can!

Help with advice on our extensive range of aids and equipment specially designed to overcome limitations imposed by poor vision.

We Can!

Arrange access to an extensive range of information in a form that would be suitable to you with impaired vision.

Our Rehabilitation Officers can arrange to visit you in your own home to explain further our services, undertake an assessment of your needs and ensure everything is done to help you to overcome your problems caused by poor sight.

Why not come along to our Resource Centre at:

38 Ardconnel Street

where we will be only too delighted to see you and to show you around - or you can phone us on:

01463 233663




What is registration?

If there is unfortunately something wrong with your eye sight that cannot be improved medically, the Consultant may ask you to consider registration.  This is an official way of saying that you have a permanent visual impairment.

Being registered means that your name will be entered on a list held by Highland Visual Services who act as agents for Highland Regional Council, to confirm that you have a serious sight problem.

Registration is worth considering as it will entitle you to claim services and benefits specially for visually impaired people.   But you don't have to register if you don't wish to - it is entirely up to you.

There are two kinds of registration - as "blind" or as "partially sighted".  If you are told that you can be registered blind does not mean that you will necessarily lose all your sight.  The word blind is used partly for legal reasons and simply means that your eye sight, as measured by your Eye Specialist, has fallen below certain limits.  Nine out of ten people registered blind have some useful sight.  For registration as partially sighted your sight, though poor, is not bad enough to be registered as blind.

If you do wish to become registered, your Consultant Ophthalmologist will decide whether you are registerable as blind or as partially sighted and will fill in the Form, B.P.I, which will then be sent to Highland Vision Services.

What are the benefits of registration?

Here are some of the benefits and services which registration may entitle you to.  Some are just for those registered as blind and some are for both blind and partially sighted people.

Benefits Blind Partially

Someone from Highland Vision Services will visit your own home and make an assessment of the services you need and the special equipment you may require

Yes Yes

Provision of support, advice and help with practical tasks.

Yes Yes

Special rehabilitation training for employment.

Yes Yes
Extra Income Tax relief. Yes No

Under certain circumstances slightly more generous treatment if you are entitled to Income Support; additional Disability Premium and Disabled Child Premium and Housing Benefit.

Yes In some cases
Disability Living Allowance if under 65 (Attendance Allowance if over 65) Might be eligible Might be eligible
A reduction of 1.25 off the cost of a T.V. licence Yes No
Free eye tests. Yes Yes
Travel pass allowing free bus/travel within the Highland Region and certain destinations out with. Yes Yes
British Rail, Rail Card (giving one-third off many tickets). Yes No
Orange Badge parking concession. Yes No
Free postage for some equipment and mail. Yes Yes
Voting - either postal or by proxy. Yes Yes
Tape library facilities and talking newspapers. Yes Yes
Free permanent loan of radio/radio cassette players. Yes Yes

What if I do not wish to be registered?

If you wish to be formally registered you can still ask to be assessed for the help you may need to keep you independent.  The Eye Specialist can arrange for you to get this help by passing on your name to Highland Vision Services who will arrange for one of their staff to visit your home.  They can help you to cope with the effects of poor vision by providing support, advice and special equipment if you need it.  Talking to you about your vision is an important part of the service but they can also help with the practical tasks we all have to perform everyday.


If you prefer you can visit the Resource Centre at 38 Ardconnel Street, Inverness, where there is a wide range of special aids and equipment on display for you to try.  It is open Monday to Friday - 9.00am to 5.00pm.




Partnership in Care

Our staff are committed to providing the highest standard of service to Visually Impaired People throughout the Highlands.

We are working in partnership with Statutory and Voluntary Organisations and individuals to achieve this standard.

We seek to offer Visually Impaired People in the Highlands the opportunity to remain as safe and as independent as they would wish to be within the limits imposed by deteriorating eyesight.

We hope you will find this information of value.

We will achieve this by:

Making contact with individuals within four weeks of receipt of certification papers from the Consultant Ophthalmologist.

Responding to the needs of individuals and their families.

Providing consistent high quality in the wide range of services we offer to our clients.

Demonstrating the quality of our services by measuring outcomes and levels of satisfaction and will set targets for improvement.

Providing professional training opportunities for our staff and volunteers to ensure we continue to meet our objectives and to live up to our values.

Ensuring value for money in our service provision.

The Service we provide:

Undertaking an assessment of needs of the individual and, when appropriate, the carer.

Emotional support and counselling to individuals and families.

A comprehensive range of rehabilitation services to support independent living and safety to include:

  • kitchen skills

  • daily living skills

  • communication skills

  • personal skills

  • leisure and recreation

Development and support programmes for babies, young children and parents.

How we respect individual clients

we undertake to ensure that:

You are treated as a person, with diginity and respect.

You will be given choices and fully in making decisions about your care.

You will be given a package of care which has been planned to meet your needs.

You will be provided with information in a suitable format for your use.

You have the right of access to appropriate information held about you in your records.

Any information you give to our staff will be treated as confidential.

We will maintain close links with different people providing your care.

Any comments and complaints you make are dealt with fairly and quickly.

Your personal preferences and requirements are respected and accommodated whenever possible.

Suggestions and complaints

We at the Society are very interested in what you think of us and welcome all your comments on our services.

You are entitled to expect that any suggestions you may have will be given our full attention and that any complaints will be treated fairly and quickly.

If you are unhappy with the quality of our service or anything else at the Society please tell us.  We welcome the opportunity to resolve problems and improve pur service provision.

Wherever possible suggestions and complaints should be dealt with on the spot with individual staff member who will try to resolve the problem as quickly as possible, or you are still unhappy, you may then wish to lodge a formal complaint to the Manager of the Rehabilitation Services.

If you do put forward a complaint:

We will acknowledge the complaint within 3 days of receipt.

Your complaint will be investigated thoroughly and impartially.

We aim to make a full response to your complaint, or an update of progress made, within one month of receipt.

Should any delay occur you will be kept informed of the progress of the investigation.

Should you wish to get in touch with us about this charter, or with a suggestion or complaint, please contact:

Miss M Hynd
Manager Rehabilitation Services
Highland Society for The Blind
Ardconnel Street

Telephone (01463) 233663

Highland Society for The Blind
The only local charity providing
comprehensive services to
Visually Impaired People
Througout the Highlands.