Macular Society Basingstoke
Leading sight loss charity the Macular Society is set to expand its services in Scotland after receiving a £120,000 grant from the National Lottery.

The Society has been awarded the funding from The National Lottery Community Fund Scotland to help it provide practical and emotional support to people with macular disease all over the country for the next three years.

The grant funding will enable the Macular Society to develop and strengthen accessible services for people with central vision loss of all ages across the country. The charity will work closely with visually-impaired people and their families; health, education and public services; employers, teachers, volunteers and other charities, to deliver these services and help anyone affected by macular disease to fulfil their potential and live healthier, more independent lives.

It will also offer peer support, access to low-vision training, equipment and technology, daily living skills, volunteer development, health and wellbeing support and a young people’s service.

Macular disease is the biggest cause of sight loss in the UK. Nearly 1.5 million people are currently affected and many more are at risk. The disease can have a devastating effect on people’s lives, leaving them unable to drive, read or see faces. Many people affected describe losing their sight as being similar to bereavement. There is still no cure and most types of the disease are not treatable. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common form of macular disease, affecting more than 600,000 people, usually over the age of 50.

Macular Society Basingstoke

Tessa Barrett, Macular Society director of services, said:

“We’re immensely grateful to The National Lottery Community Fund Scotland for its support. This funding will help us to provide more life-changing support to people in Scotland with macular disease, especially reaching people in more isolated, rural communities.

“We need to make as many people as possible aware of macular disease and the devastating impact it can have on a person’s life. We also need to let anyone affected know about the wide range of support that’s available and continue to deliver the services they need.”

Neil Ritch, the National Lottery Community Fund Scotland director, said:

“I am delighted that the Macular Society has secured a grant from The National Lottery Community Fund. This award will make a real difference where it is needed most and I wish the Macular Society every success delivering a great project for their community.”

For more information on macular disease, call the Macular Society on 0300 3030 111 or email help@macularsociety.org