Sight loss support group offers help and advice

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A Burnley support group for partially sighted people, founded seven years ago, is seeking new members to help raise awareness.

The Burnley Macular Support Group, set up by Olive Western, provides support to sufferers of macular degeneration, an eye condition that causes the loss of central vision.

The group, which currently has more than 40 members, holds monthly meetings at the CVS building in Yorkshire Street.

Olive, who suffers from the condition herself, said: “There is, as yet, no cure for macular conditions, but treatments are available to slow down its progress, and there is a lot of research to find new treatments and potentially a cure.

“Our support group seeks to help members to use their peripheral vision more effectively, sharing tips and practical ways to assist everyday living.

“After diagnosis, it can be quite traumatic, leading to a feeling of isolation and vulnerability.

“Membership of a support group is so helpful in this situation, making available advice, assurance and confidence to our members.”

As part of the society’s national awareness week, three of the local branch, who are members of the Burnley Lions, held a coffee morning at the home of chairman Frank Seed, which raised £250.

The Society of St George has also nominated the Macular Support Group as its charity and raised £250.

Olive added: “This generosity will help our group enormously, especially in the light of all the cuts in funding to voluntary organisations.

“We have an ageing membership and would love to attract some younger people to come and help us.”

For more information call Olive on 01282 436587.