What’s on the line with Blind Veterans UK?

Last year we were delighted to be able to work with Blind Veterans UK to support veterans with sight loss and visual impairment; a partnership which will be continuing throughout 2019, so watch this space for upcoming events and news.

Here is our first guest blog from Josie, Volunteer Coordinator for BVUK. If you would like further information or to be signposted to the charity, please call our Information & Signposting Helpline on 0300 500 1895.


Josie from Blind Veterans UK challenges you to give up your phone for a day #24Unplugged

I’m Josie, Volunteer Coordinator for Essex at Blind Veterans UK. We help vision-impaired ex-Service men and women of every generation rebuild their lives after sight loss.

This month we’re challenging supporters to try a “digital detox” by going unplugged for 24 hours and it’s being backed by one of our blind veterans from Colchester.

Our challenge, which for many will be considered impossible in 2019, is intended to encourage people to use the day to spend more time with friends and family, as well as supporting blind veterans across the country.

We want to use the opportunity to highlight the isolation often experienced by the veterans we support as any issues of isolation felt as we age only increase if you have lost your sight.

Our digital detox challenge is being backed by Wally Nixon, one of our blind veterans from Colchester.
Wally says: “I know how important digital devices are for allowing people to do more, I don’t know where I would be without my adapted technology. This challenge isn’t about saying they’re bad.

“It’s the fact that people are saying they will find this hard that makes it a challenge. And that challenge means that those who donate for you will know that the money raised will have been earned.

“I think we all know people who could stand to take a break from staring at their phone all day so maybe you want to nominate a friend or loved one.”

Paul Lawless, our Head of Community Engagement says: “Phones help us feel connected to the world – but can you imagine having no one to turn to, online or otherwise?

“We know that tens of thousands of ex-service men and women around the nation experience not only the effects of sight loss, but isolation too.

“Everyone who spends a day away from your phone will help us to reconnect those veterans with their communities, and support them to rebuild their lives after losing their sight.”

#24Unplugged will be taking place on Saturday 26 January with those taking part having the challenge of going without all phones and other devices for the whole day. This date is significant as it is the Saturday that immediately follows Blue Monday (21 January), long claimed to be the most depressing day of the year.