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Important updates about BucksVision's services

21 December 2020

Following the news that Buckinghamshire has been placed into the new Tier 4 category we have sadly had to once again suspend our Resource Centre Appointments. Our office will actually be closing from 5pm Wednesday 23 December until Monday 4 January so we will review the situation when we return; however if we do remain in Tier 4 we will not be able to resume the appointments.

We hope that we will be able to resume some, if not all, of our face to face activities in 2021 and will keep our members and this page regularly updated.

30 November 2020

We are delighted to announce that as lockdown is ending this week we are able to start booking Resource Centre Appointments again from this Wednesday 2 December. If you would like an appointment to come and view our equipment including magnification please call us on 01296 487 556 to book one. Appointments last an hour and staff wear masks throughout the appointment - all equipment is santised before and after each appointment and there is no interaction with others present in the building. 

9 November 2020

As we enter the first full week of a second, hopefully shorter lockdown, our Chief Executive Steve Naylor has recorded a video update which you can watch on YouTube or read a transcript here.

During this lockdown we will be suspending the booking of Resource Centre Appointments, as soon as we are able to offer them again we will let you know. However if you want advice or help with equipment in the meantime please don't hesitate to contact us.

During the last lockdown we expanded our Telephone Befriending Services, if you would be interested in receiving a Telephone Befriender during this time please do let us know. A Telephone Befriender will call you on regular basis for a ​friendly chat and make sure all is well.

We have been running a virtual Technology Group since May and our last meeting of the year will be a talk on Smart Televisions and associated gadgets. If you would like to find out more about smart televisions and how accessible they are the meeting is on Thursday 3 December at 2pm and can be accessed via phone or online, email us or give us a call for the joining instructions.

11 September 2020

After a review of our services at end of August, we have decided that, sadly, we still cannot safely resume any of our other face to face activities at this time; we continue to offer resource centre appointments and limited home services. We will continue to review the situation and work on other ways to help people in the meantime.

1 August 2020

In light of the change in government guidance to start returning to the office, if it is safe to do so, the BucksVision office is now open on Tuesday and Thursdays for staff to work from there; for the remainder of the week they will continue to work from home. 

After risk assessing and putting additional guidelines in place we have also resumed our Resource Centre appointments in Aylesbury. Appointments will be limited to one hour and you will need to have access to your own transport for the time being as we are not able to offer volunteer drivers at this time. Ideally appointments will take place on Tuesday or Thursday but we are flexible and can arrange appointments on other days if required.

13 May 2020

In light of the Government’s announcement on Sunday (10 May), and the introduction of a new "conditional plan" to ease the coronavirus lockdown, allowing people in England to spend more time outdoors from Wednesday, we wanted to give you an overview of how this may affect BucksVision as an organisation and people accessing our services. 

As Government advice for office workers remains the same, for the time being, BucksVision staff will continue to work from home. However, as before, we can still be reached by email or by calling our main office number (01296 487 556). In terms of BucksVision’s face to face services, for now, our clubs and activities will remain closed. We will continue to monitor the situation, and although we hope that we may be able to resume some of our services from September (for activities where social distancing guidelines can be maintained safely) it is possible that many of our services will not resume until a later date, depending on Government advice.

For the time being we continue to run an extended Telephone Befriending Service for members who would like regular contact with a volunteer and keep our social media channels updated. Our volunteers are also continnuing to keep in touch with our regular club members to ensure they are well and supported. Looking ahead, we are investigating introducing some virtual services such as quizzes or coffee morning. If you have any suggestions of services we could provide please don't hesitate to contact us by email or phone. We understand that there may be concerns around people who do not have access to technology or the internet but can confirm that many of the platforms used for virtual events allow people to join by phone. 

Please find below a short video from our Chief Executive confirming the information above. And if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact a member of the team.

1 April 2020

Steve Naylor has recorded a short video to let you know that we are still here to help - you can view it here.

25 March 2020

In light of Monday’s guidance from the Government, we wanted to let you know that we have taken the decision to close the BucksVision office. 

However BucksVision staff will continue to work from home and we can be reached by phone on 01296 487 556 or by email, so if you do need any help or advice please don't hesitate to contact us.

We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience that this causes, but these are difficult times. We hope that things return to ‘business as usual’ in the near future and will let you know as soon as the office reopens.

We hope you stay safe and well,

Steve Naylor, Chief Executive and all of the BucksVision Team

16 March 2020

It seems likely that people over 70 will be advised in the weeks ahead to stay at home for an extended period to protect themselves and others.  This is because older people (and those with underlying health conditions) are more vulnerable to falling seriously ill if they catch the coronavirus. Clearly, the safety of our volunteers and members must come first, even if this means suspending some of our services until the situation re: the spread of the virus is clearer. The significant majority of the people whom we support are past retirement age, simply because sight loss is often caused by conditions resulting from the ageing process, such as AMD and glaucoma.
Consequently, along with many other organisations, including other local societies, we have taken the difficult decision to suspend our face to face activities with immediate effect. Our face to face activities include all of our social clubs, bowls groups, walking groups, tandem, hospital services, resource centre visits and any home-based services (if you are a Home Services or Hospital Volunteer, Lisa will be in contact with you tomorrow to discuss this further). Clearly, I hope that this will be a short-term measure, but the situation continues to develop rapidly, and we need to put people’s health first. It seems that this situation is likely to persist for a number of weeks, until April or May, possibly even later, and I will continue to monitor developments closely and issue regular updates.
The BucksVision office will remain open for the time being. However, should this change, alternative arrangements will be put in place to support staff to work from home. Volunteer recruitment will continue, but there are no immediate plans to hold any form of volunteer training including our planned First Aid and Refresher Training that was scheduled for April.  Samantha will be in touch separately about this in due course.
We are conscious that there are members and volunteers who may become increasingly vulnerable if isolated for a prolonged period. We hope to operate an extended telephone befriending service which staff and any willing volunteers can support to maintain regular contact with those most at risk. Please get in touch if you are interested in helping (we are happy to reimburse any telephone costs incurred for the service).
My thanks to everyone for all of their help and support during this difficult time. 
Stay safe, and if you require any support, please do get in touch.
Steve Naylor, Chief Executive