The Dream (Trial)


We at ERGoodCauses, would like to ensure that everyone living within East Renfrewshire who is registered blind or visually impaired, has knowledge of, trial and training on, and a helping hand to access, the many different products, not available from the NHS, that can really improve their independence and quality of life.


Inspired by my personal Christian faith, powered by my two life saving "donated organs" living on inside me, combining with my own experience of being registered blind, I want ERGoodCauses to "Love our Neighbours" by actually improving the lives of our blind and partially sighted residents. I see this project as a practical way and outpouring of Christian Love in a modern western world. I want all those with sight loss to feel cared for in our community.


Examples of what's not provided by the state


  • Hand held magnifiers - take photo and expand picture plus change colour scheme to enable reading
  • Buzz Clip - small clip on piece of equipment that acts in the same way as a "car parking sensor"
  • Ipad and Iphone - many special features very helpful for those with the skills and confidence to use them
  • Talking microwave - verbalises the timing and cooking power settings
  • Steam iron - only irons using steam, so doesn't burn clothing for those using an iron, but cant see the temperature setting on traditional irons.


Depending on factors like age, IT ability, etc - some products are more suitable for different people than others.


Current Gap


At present, there are so many people with differing degrees of sight loss, that are unaware of the wide variety of products available, and because they are not provided by the state, there can be a reluctance for frontline staff, to explain about a product, that the worker is unable to provide due to financial restrictions. The state may offer a relatively basic magnifier, or a white stick, but resources don't stretch to the many products that could enhance someones life. I believe that often, a worker may refer on to a group like Visibility or the RNIB, but these are often difficult for people with sight loss to properly access and engage with.


Proposed Solution


All sections of our ER community, to pull together and help close the gap as described above.


How We Propose to Do It


HSCP Visibility East Renfrewshire Good Causes


We look to create a list of potential funders, who may be willing to provide at least part grant funding towards the equipment, where the level of grant will be a minimum of 50% of product cost, rising to 75% or even 100% in exceptional circumstances. So that we raise the standard within ER for those with sight loss.


Who Would Be Involved


1 - Referrals for those with sight loss come via

  • ER visual rehabilitation team
  • Visibility in Glasgow
  • ER Opticians
  • Glasgow Eye Infirmary
  • GPs and frontline care staff


2 - Trial and Demonstration to establish effectiveness

  • ERGoodCauses provides some demo models to frontline rehab team
  • ERGoodCauses provides return taxi fare into Visibility resource room for those unable able to self-fund.
  • PC World/Apple Store and other retailers offering demonstrations.
  • East Renfrewshire Library staff
  • Volunteers including those with sight loss who use the technology themselves.
  • Churches
St Josephs Clarkston Maxwell Mearns Christian Support Fund Broom Church Christian Support Fund


3 - Grant Funding to help purchase items for individual residents living in ER.

  • ERGoodCauses
  • Local churches
  • Local Trusts
  • Product suppliers/manufacturers
  • Community Fundraising efforts


Media/Social Media etc. to help publicise the effective products at a local level via Extra, Barrhead News, Evening Times, ERGoodCauses Facebook etc.


The above will supplement clients own contribution whether it comes from their Disability Living Allowance DLA/PIP, personal resources or family and friends wishing to gift to provide the solution.


The above operating model, being co-ordinated by ERGoodCauses as a project within its wider role of this local charity, to minimise costs.


This is what I consider to be, an excellent example of trying to follow the example that Jesus set, but done in today's context. I personally feel it shows just how relevant Christianity is in our modern world - Christianity in action and I'm loving it.


Russell Macmillan - Founder of ERGoodCauses


Sight and Sound


East Renfrewshire Good Causes East Renfrewshire Good Causes