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Putting research into practice – what can be done to inform and engage people from BAME communities with a vision impairment? The Tower HamletsExperience.

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Presentation on theme: "Putting research into practice – what can be done to inform and engage people from BAME communities with a vision impairment? The Tower HamletsExperience."— Presentation transcript:

1 Putting research into practice – what can be done to inform and engage people from BAME communities with a vision impairment? The Tower HamletsExperience The Tower Hamlets Experience Barbara Disney Interim Service Head – Commissioning & Strategy

2 Some background:  Tower Hamlets is very diverse community with nearly half (46.1%) the population from ethnic minority groups (Census 2001)  The largest minority ethnic group in Tower Hamlets is Bangladeshi (33.4%)  A major characteristic of this community is the age profile which is much younger than the white community  An awareness that the demography was not reflected in people accessing the Sensory Impairment Team or registering

3 What we did:  Developed a partnership arrangement with SeeAbility to establish why many of the estimated 450 residents with a visual impairment from ethnic minority groups were not accessing services  A report Why Can’t You See Me? was produced which made a services of recommendations including the recruitment to a bilingual development officer post located within the Sensory Impairment Team

4 Issues raised:  The need to ensure appropriate, culturally sensitive communication systems, including information and signposting for minority ethnic visually impaired people  The need to work more closely with community organisations including faith groups to enable them to accommodate visually impaired people  The need to identify people with visual impairment and support them in accessing services  The need to development a peer led support group enable service user involvement in the planning and delivery of services

5 What we did next:  Commissioned an evaluation of the SeeAbility Project to inform future arrangements for Low Vision services for BME communities  Used information gathered to develop a Service Agreement with SeeAbility to address some of the complex issues raised in the report

6 What worked well:  The peer led support group which was initiated by the Development Worker but is now an independent project, known as Dektay-Chai  The establishment of the multi-disciplinary Low Vision Committee, which has user representation  An increase in service users from BME groups known to the Sensory Impairment Team from 29% of new referrals in to 46% in

7 What are our future plans:  The development of a Directory of Services for People with Sight Problems in Tower Hamlets which will be widely available to known service users, health and social care services and our third sector partners and will provide access information to a wide range of community organisations including libraries, mosques etc. with a view to decreasing social isolation  To develop clear eye-care pathways, including that for Low Vision services, which are more community based  To continue to engage with local community based organisations to ensure the needs of minority groups with Low Vision needs are addressed


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