Friends and family sighted guiding training

Our friends and family training can give close companions the skills and knowledge they need to better understand and support friends or family members with a vision impairment.

This includes how to guide safely and confidently, as well as providing more information about different eye conditions.

What are some of the benefits of sighted guiding training?

  • Gain a better understanding of different sight loss conditions
  • Improved sighted guiding skills to support individual needs
  • Increased confidence when guiding
  • A chance to meet others in a similar situation

Learning how to guide someone

As part of full sighted guiding training, you’ll learn things like:

  • Giving clear instructions to describe obstacles, hazards or changes in ground surface – but not overloading the person you’re guiding with information
  • Using directions such as ‘left’ or ‘straight ahead’, not ‘over there’
  • Leaving enough room around obstacles – not forgetting those at head height as well as ground level
  • Never pushing or pulling the person you’re guiding

By learning a technique or two in sighted guiding, you’ll be well equipped to confidently and safely provide help if needed.

My Guide training with Sophie Thompson

Sight loss is an issue close to actress Sophie Thompson’s heart as both her mother and grandmother were diagnosed with hereditary glaucoma. To understand more about our sighted guiding service and help us raise awareness of how it can change lives, Sophie spent time with My Guide trainer, Fran. Fran taught her how to guide someone confidently and in the best way for them.

“I got an added insight into how it must have been for my gran as progressively her sight got worse,” says Sophie. “It was unbelievably emotional.”

Sophie then practiced the skills she had learned by safely guiding one of our vision-impaired staff members, Dave. She says:

“When people think of Guide Dogs they assume it’s just the dogs but actually it’s so much more. My Guide is one of those terrific services that Guide Dogs offers beyond the dog, and more people need to know about it.”

Download our information leaflet on how to guide a person with a vision impairment safely


If you or someone you know is interested in our friends and family training, get in touch with a member of our team. They will then discuss the training and what it involves, before giving you information on the next available dates.