SeeAbility awarded £308,976 Department of Health grant towards unique Children in Focus project
The huge six-figure sum is part of nearly £9 million handed out to the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector over the next three years. SeeAbility successfully applied to the Innovation, Excellence and Strategic Development Fund (IESD) for support in transforming eye care for children who attend special schools.
The charity, which supports people with sight loss and multiple disabilities, will use the grant to scale up their sight testing work, as they seek to establish a robust eye care system for children with learning disabilities across England.
Children with learning disabilities are 28 times more likely to have a serious sight problem than other children and SeeAbility has expanded to carry out sight tests in six London special schools. Over the last year they have found over half the children they tested had a vision problem and 43 per cent had no history of eye care at all.
“We are delighted to have been awarded the grant that will help us deliver more specialist sight tests in more special schools around the country,” said Paula Spinks-Chamberlain, director of external affairs, SeeAbility. Each specialist sight test we carry out costs over £85 and financial support like this enables us to reach more children. After Easter we are expanding our Children in Focus project to a Durham special school.”