New sight loss support group to launch in Storrington

A new support group is being launched to help increase the confidence and independence of people affected by sight loss in and around Storrington.

The group, which has been organised by the Macular Society, in partnership with local people, will meet for the first time on Tuesday 28 May, from 2-4pm, at the Old School, School Lane, Storrington RH20 4LL. It is hoped that the group will then meet at the same time and location on the fourth Tuesday of every month.

The ongoing aim of the group will be to offer information, encouragement and friendship to people who are affected by macular disease and other sight loss conditions.

Macular disease is the biggest cause of blindness in the UK. Nearly 1.5 million people are currently affected and many more are at risk. The disease can have a devastating effect on people’s lives, leaving them unable to drive, read or see faces. Many people affected describe losing their sight as being similar to bereavement. There is still no cure and most types of the disease are not treatable. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common form of macular disease, affecting more than 600,000 people, usually over the age of 50.

Stella Black, Macular Society regional manager, said: “This new group is here for anybody affected by sight loss and we want to encourage people to come along. Friends and family are very welcome, and we’re also very keen to hear from anyone who has some free time and would be willing to help with organising meetings.

“It’s good to be able to learn from each other’s experiences and get tips. The peer support can be so helpful. Our groups can really help people increase in confidence and become more independent.

“The group will invite guest speakers on a variety of subjects, including macular conditions and their impact on our daily lives. The meetings are also social occasions where we can chat over a cup of tea.”

For more information on the group, please contact Philippa Wrightson, group leader, on 01903 743 182, email philippa.wrightson@gmail.com, or Stella Black on 01306 644 908 / 07494 467 980, email stella.black@macularsociety.org

For more information on macular disease, call the Macular Society on 0300 3030 111 or email help@macularsociety.org

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