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Norwich School Blog

Spotlight on : Co-Curricular - Volunteering With Vision Norfolk

Vision Norfolk is a charity for people living with sight loss and visual impairment, providing practical and emotional support at their hubs in Norwich, King’s Lynn and Great Yarmouth in hospitals across Norfolk. Together with social well-being activities for adults and children, young people and their family, daily living equipment, befriending services and specialist housing, they help those affected by sight loss to live life fully.

As part of my role with the marketing Community Service Group, i was privileged recently to have the opportunity to accompany fellow pupils Florence Carter, Myrinda Stipp and Shraeya Saravanavel on their first experience volunteering with Vision Norfolk as part of their Community Service.

On arrival, we were greeted by one of the staff members, called Jo, who introduced us to Edward, who has been permanently blind since birth. Edward spoke to us about some of the common misconceptions when it comes to being blind and entertained us with some of  his unusual experiences with it; one of which being encouraged to feel a friends face to get an idea of ‘what they looked like.’

Later on, Jo gave us the chance to try on some glasses that have been altered to give the impression of what different type of  blind people see. After trying on the glasses Florence explained that ‘It made me feel a whole new type of empathy towards people who cannot see. It really put into perspective how affected their lives can be.'

We finished the session with a short video about things you should never say to blind people which included phrases such as ‘you can stop pretending to be blind now’, ‘I’m so glad you can be happy and blind’ or ‘see you later - oh sorry’ which was both eye-opening and amusing.

All three of the volunteers are really looking forward to continuing to  volunteer with Vison Norfolk, as they feel it is an opportunity not just to help, but to learn as well. 

By Jessica Hunter, L6