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Project information

Eccentric Viewing Training Programme

To recruit, train and support sighted and visually impaired volunteers to deliver eccentric viewing training across the UK to people with central vision loss. This will allow mainly elderly people, to remain independent, active and retain self confidence; preventing social isolation and depression

January 2013 - December 2015

Charity information: Macular Society

Macular Society logo
  • Need


    Two million people in the UK are living with sight loss. From difficulties reading a newspaper, driving and recognising a friend across the room, to blindness that makes it difficult to cook, look after oneself or leave their home without help. The number of people with sight loss is set to increase significantly in the next 25 years, primarily because of the ageing population. The EV technique allows one to use remaining sight to retain independence, self confidence and remain socially engaged


    The Society will train sighted and visually impaired volunteers and support them as they train visually impaired people how to use EV across the UK. It will be delivered and shared with local residents (1300 currently on list for training). Volunteers will train at least 2 people per year. All people requesting training will be shown the technique and peer support and monitoring will ensure maximum effect. EV awareness will be increased through eye professionals, recommendation & website

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Everyone with central vision loss should be able to access rehabilitation and low vision/ EV service


    » Run 9 EV Courses for 180 sighted volunteers They will be located across the UK in accessible locations
    » Run15 EV courses for 120 visually impaired volunteers across the country each with 8 vols in attendance
    » 13 vol network events to provide ongoing support to EV trainers, refresh technique share best practice and develop peer support and sustainability
    » 1 practitioner conference, 3 stakeholder workshops for professionals involved in ophthalmic services including surgeons, GP's to share value of EV

    What success will look like

    Success will be...measured by the numbers of beneficiaries trained and evaluation of their experience. Hard and soft outcomes will be measured including quality of life, confidence

  • Impact


    The project will address the disparities in access to low vision services and support services by mainly elderly people across the UK identified in the Vision 2020 Strategy by:
    Increased number elderly receiving low vision training and support
    Increased number elderly remaining acitve and independent
    Increased number of elderly reporting quality of life
    Increased number of beneficiaries with ability to access low vision services across the UK


    1.failure to recruit sufficient volunteers
    Large number of vols waiting for training
    2. Insufficient beneficiaries come forward for training
    We currently have over 700 people wishing to be trained in EV on our list
    3.. Failure to engage professionals
    We have commitment from over 200 partners across the UK to support delivery inc WCB Visionary & NAB
    3. Insufficient capacity of org to deliver UK programme
    We have successfully delivered pilot programme


    Qualitative and Quantitative information will be presented quarterly against specified outputs and outcomes.
    Evaluation reports will be completed at end of each year and on conclusion of funding

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £241,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £150,500 Volunteer Costs EV Training for sighted and VI vols & support
      £35,200 Volunteer Costs Network Events & Vol Expenses
      £23,000 Workshops& Conferences network events for practitioners and proffs
      £32,300 Other costs Publicity, evaluation, website development
  • Background


    The project will operate across the UK including Northern Ireland and the Channel Islands. Initial clusters of need will be targeted first followed by a sustained campaign across the country


    Anyone wishing to access the service will be allowed on the programme. Due to the nature of central vision loss we anticipate most of the beneficiaries to be elderly, however we do have service users of working age and there are tests which suggest younger people including children could benefit from EV training.
    Professionals will also be able to access the service and will be encouraged to participate in sighted EV training events

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We are the only UK charity dedicated to supporting people with Macular Disease and central vision loss.
    We currently have over 800 volunteers and 215 groups across the country including the UK and the Channel islands.
    We have developed strong partnerships with local low vision services and are well respected across the eye profession.
    We have a demand already in existence with over 1300 people on the waiting list to receive training and we expect this demand to increase significantly.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Project Manager

    Is a low vision expert and will oversee the delivery of the programme ensuring sufficient resources are committed in the most appropriate locations.

    Volunteer Co-Ordinator

    Will co-ordinate and support our volunteer trainers, co-ordinating the training events, networks and conferences providing Info advice and guidance.


    The volunteer will teach eccentric viewing to individuals in their own home allowing them to use their remaining sight to regain their independence

Teaching the Eccentric Viewing technique

Teaching the Eccentric Viewing technique


Train 20 volunteers Benefit 240 elderly people