Kingston Upon Thames Association for the Blind

KAB and Covid 19

I write this on Mothering Sunday morning. Normally, at this time I would be in the middle of a service at St Andrew’s - but not today. As this and two other sources of socialising (going to work and The Prince of Wales, Ewell Road) are closed to me and I live on my own, believe me, I understand the tedium, of social isolation.

The principal purpose of KAB has always been to address the social isolation of the VI community in the Borough. This we intend to continue to do, once the current self-isolation period is declared over, but I am certain all are aware that we have to follow whatever Government advice we are given concerning social gatherings in order to keep staff and members safe.

The current position is as follows:

· We have had to suspend all KAB clubs and I am grateful to Surbiton and New Malden clubs for following suit. We will review this monthly in line with Government advice.

· The AGM is also suspended

· The office will remain open to staff as long as we advised it is safe to do so, to staff, but no casual visitors please.

· Employees are able to work from home and able to communicate with each other through a WhatsApp group. They are also able to monitor messages remotely, this will be done twice a day, on week-days, but callers are asked to ‘be brief.’

· The Eye Buddy scheme will continue, though you are asked to telephone each other first before a physical visit.

· We are able to offer shopping delivery services, but no longer home visits. By now, you may have your own arrangements in place as there are a number of neighbourhood volunteers offering this service.

· The Talking Newspaper aims to continue for as long as they are able and Brian is actively promoting that this is now available on 0330 223 3452 and the Amazon Echo (Alexa) as an alternative to memory sticks. A BIG thank you to Brian and his team of producers and Editors.

I would certainly encourage you all to keep in touch with each other by telephone, email or other social media – there are quite probably various Facebook and WhatsApp groups that you may be involved with, that we are not aware of!

It’s a challenging time for all of society, my advice to you all is, follow Official guidance, be wary of ‘fake news’ and above all STAY SAFE!

Adrian Munt

Chairman/Treasurer.

N.B. May I please draw your attention to two more articles from myself, in the ‘Latest News’ page of this website, originally intended for KAB’s Winter/Spring edition of Eye Opener.****

Welcome to the Kingston Upon Thames Association for the Blind

Did you know that almost a million people in the UK today have a visual impairment?

Kingston Association for the Blind operates within the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames in Greater London and offers a range of services and support for visually impaired people. In the borough there are over 1,000 people with varying degrees of sight loss.

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