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As a citizen of Wakefield District with a visual impairment, there are numerous ways you can get information and assistance to help you manage with your sight loss. It does not matter whether you are registered* as having a visual impairment or not, as the majority of these services are still available to you.

Wakefield District Council have a duty to keep a register of people who are certified by a Consultant Ophthalmologist as being eligible for registration as sight impaired or severely sight impaired. Registration is entirely optional, but there may be some benefits (see below).

The Visual Impairment Service

The Visual Impairment Service is part of the Sensory Impairment Team (S.I.T.) covering the whole of the Wakefield District. The Service comprises Rehabilitation Officers (Visual Impairment) (ROVIs) and Social Work staff. In line with Family Services policies and procedures, the Service provides assessment, direct provision of services and care management focussing on helping people of all ages with the impact of sight loss and ways to regain or maintain as much independence as possible.

A ROVI can assist with:

Daily Living Skills

This includes making a drink, preparing food, cooking, storing and labelling items; cleaning, washing and ironing; use of low vision equipment and other vision enhancement techniques to maximise any remaining residual vision.

ROVIs can help visually impaired people learn new skills and adapt old ones to carry out a full range of daily living tasks.


Advice and training to enable visually impaired people to move about safely and confidently in their own home or outdoors. This may include the appropriate use of a variety of white canes or a walking stick.


This includes guidance about reading and writing techniques; help to use aids and equipment such as magnifiers, tape recorders, computer technology; teaching new methods such as touch typing, Braille or Moon. People are encouraged to come together to learn.

Social Work Staff carry out assessments with people who have a visual impairment who may not need the ROVI services described above but may need other assistance.

The services can be accessed by:

Social Care Direct is available 24 hrs a day, 365 days a year.

Last reviewed: 02/04/2015

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