Tag Archives: VI

My Guide: Leisure & Recreational!

My Guide by Guide dogs

The My Guide scheme

The My Guide scheme began in 2012 and is still developing based on the needs of service users.

It is a free service in which volunteers are matched with users to help with participating in activities away from the home including leisure and recreational.

The volunteers and users meet up once a week for a minimum of six months which varies according to the needs of the user.

The volunteers are not to help with essential homebased tasks like reading, housework and shopping, but for getting out and doing things.

Users must be vision impaired, able to speak English and able to walk: the scheme cannot support people with wheelchairs or walking frames but can support  those with crutches or a walking stick.

There is a waiting list of 3 to 4 months, reduced recently from 6.

My Guide enjoys a steady influx of volunteers in London and the age of volunteers ranges mainly between 25 and 34.

Guide Dogs organises the DBS checks on volunteers and pays their travel expenses and pays £5 per session for drinks.

For more information email Francesca on francesca.vella@guidedogs.org.uk


What is the Access Card?

Access Card

What is the Access Card?

Information, Evidence, Discounts and Opportunities for Disabled People
The Access Card is a card like no other, we translate your disability / impairment into symbols which highlight the barriers you face and the reasonable adjustments you might need.

This then informs providers quickly and discreetly about the support you need and may gain you access to things like concessionary ticket prices and complex reasonable adjustments without having to go into loads of personal detail.
Its all based on your rights under the Equality Act and providers responsibilities.

All for just £15 for 3 years!

Apply for a Card

large image of the demo Access card
The Access Card contains symbols related to your needs and is accepted as proof of disability and more at venues across the country

What Customers say…

  • The card would be a useful tool, to save me the time and humiliation of having to explain everything – often to people who don’t have time, or are in a noisy environment so I have to shout!
  • I want to attend gigs, but can’t do it if I’m not able to sit or have to queue to get in.
  • I have been asking for something like this for years. My disability is not always visible so I have to go through the embarrassment of explaining my personal health problems to complete strangers who sometimes don’t even believe me. I’m hoping this card will be recognised everywhere, as it will change my life!
  • I believe having something that is discreet and accepted will make things easier. I’ve tried a variety of places to find out about “registered disabled” and how to get classified only to find out that it doesn’t actually exist. A person shouldn’t have to carry paperwork with all kinds of personal information around with them just in case they need to get someone to understand they need help.
  • I am often in situations where I need to provide evidence of a disability, usually using proof of receipt of DLA. However this award has nothing to do with the reason for the need.  A card which can be carried in a wallet and which relates to the need would seem ideal.
logo of some of providers who are linked into access card
Some of the providers working to integrate the Access card into their systems for disabled customers… an ever increasing list


certified social enterprise logo

Nimbus Disability, created the Access Card and its associated Quality Assurance Scheme CredAbility.

Nimbus is a Social Enterprise set up by disabled people in 2006 to provide advice and guidance to organisations on how best to meet disabled people’s needs in line with what was then the Disability Discrimination Act.

Over the years Nimbus has worked with a wide range of different companies each facing their own issues with regard to working with disabled people.

Long story short: we married our experience of working with companies and for disabled people; eventually coming  up with what we call ‘the bits in the middle’: CredAbility and The Access Card!

Apply for a Card



Power cuts: you can get extra support

Do you need extra support during a power cut?  Anyone who has a visual impairment, is Deaf, Hard of Hearing or has combined sight and hearing loss, can sign up to UK Power Networks’ free register.

By joining the register, you will receive:

  • A priority phone number that you can call 24 hours a day and regular updates until your power is back on
  • A welcome pack with useful advice about preparing for a power cut
  • Regular text message updates if you text ‘Power’ followed by your postcode to 80876
  • Extra support from the British Red Cross

Visit the website to register at http://www.ukpowernetworks.co.uk

Original article was posted by Sight for Surrey in the Lines of Sight  February 2016 Newsletter