Family support

Our Family Support team offers practical and emotional support, advice and information to the families of children with a visual impairment, as well as working with other professionals and organisations.

You can find our online information and resources here, or you can call the advice line 0800 781 1444

On this page

We know that the consistent and informed support for the whole family, including grandparents, brothers and sisters, is invaluable for parents of a child with sight loss – which is why we are here to listen, care and advise.

We can do that by explaining complex terms, giving independent advice on claiming benefits or contacting agencies and organisations on your family’s behalf.

In Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, we work closely with local charities to provide family support services.

When to get in touch

If you feel you are in one of these situations:

  • Your child has been diagnosed with a vision impairment within the last 12 months
  • Your child has yet to receive a diagnosis for a vision impairment
  • Your child’s vision has recently changed
  • You attend frequent hospital visits/eye tests
  • You have recently moved to a new area
  • Your child does not receive, or you are looking to apply for, benefits and grants
  • You are looking for activities and early development advice for your child

Then please do get in touch with our Family Support service to find out how we can help.

Helpful downloads and resources

We want to ensure children and young people with sight loss, along with their families, always feel supported. Browse our downloads below for more detailed information and resources.

Additionally, for information on living with sight loss and eye health, visit the Sight Advice FAQ website.

  • Indications and awareness of vision difficulties

    An information sheet providing tips on what to look for if you believe your baby/toddler may have a vision impairment, and what to do next.

    Indications and awareness of vision difficulties (pdf 110.23kb)
  • Eye conditions explained

    On receiving the news that your child is vision impaired, you will probably be told the name of the eye condition and some information about it. Digesting this may not be easy at first, so this download gives an overview of a number of eye conditions to give you a starting point.

    Eye conditions explained (pdf 158.30kb)
  • Glossary

    When your child is undergoing tests to determine a diagnosis of vision impairment it is often a distressing and emotional time. It can be difficult to fully understand what consultants and specialists are telling you about your child’s vision. This glossary gives an explanation of some of the terminology you may hear during a hospital visit.

    Glossary (pdf 155.67kb)
  • Vision impairment – a guide for parents: terminology key

    This resource provides useful information to dispel myths you may hear about vision impairment in children. We hope this document will put your mind at ease.

    Vision impairment - a guide for parents - terminology key (pdf 101.48kb)
  • Who is who – professionals supporting your family

    The world of vision impairment can be daunting, especially when hearing about and coming into contact with different people in the field of health, social care and education. This information sheet provides information about those professionals, with a brief explanation of their role.

    Who is who - professionals supporting your family (pdf 171.74kb)
  • Tips on completing disability living allowance and carer's allowance forms

    There are a number of benefits that you may be entitled to if your child has a vision impairment, but the application process can feel daunting. This step-by-step guide is here to help you complete the forms. We can also offer you additional practical support and guidance through the process, should you require more help.

    Tips on completing disability living allowance and carer's allowance forms (pdf 245.50kb)
  • Accessing social services

    It is not always easy to know all the statutory services that may be available to you and your child with a vision impairment. Social services are there to support you – this guide should be helpful when trying to access the services that you require.

    Tips on accessing social services (pdf 116.38kb)
  • Answering a child or young person's questions

    Once diagnosed with a vision impairment, it is highly likely that your child or young person will have questions or concerns about their condition. This information sheet aims to provide you with advice on how to address their questions and who to turn to for support and guidance.

    Answering your child or young person's questions (pdf 139.41kb)
  • Supporting brothers and sisters of children/young people with a vision impairment

    When a child or young person is diagnosed with a vision impairment, it is likely that this will cause their brothers and sisters to have questions or concerns. This information sheet offers suggestions and advice to help you support your children at such times.

    Supporting brothers and sisters (pdf 50.00kb)

Do you need help?

Please get in touch if you'd like some advice, or to chat about how we can help you.

0800 781 1444