Search is on for sighted guides

South Wales Guardian: LOOKING AHEAD: My Guide Ambassador for Wales Kylene Rafferty will be searching for volunteer sighted guides ion Ammanford. LOOKING AHEAD: My Guide Ambassador for Wales Kylene Rafferty will be searching for volunteer sighted guides ion Ammanford.

Guide Dogs Cymru is coming to Ammanford in search of two-legged volunteers for an ambitious new project.

The charity is aiming to help blind and visually impaired people in the area get out and about by pairing them with specially-trained human guides.

The scheme, entitled My Guide, works by matching a trained volunteer with a blind or partially sighted person in order to help them reach their “mobility goal”. This could be as simple as walking to the shops in order to increase mobility, confidence and independence.

The charity’s My Guide Ambassador for Wales, Kylene Rafferty, said identifying the Right volunteers is vital.

“We will take care to get the right match of personality and interests,” she said, a trained sighted guide.

“For example, a blind or visually impaired person may wish to work towards going to the football every week.

“A volunteer might only give an hour a week, but it needs to be a regular commitment.”

Volunteers will receive specialist training in practical sighted-guiding to as well as improving communication skills and overcoming barriers to independence.

“Volunteers say they get great satisfaction from helping a visually impaired person to become more mobile,” said Kylene.

“They are giving something back to their community, and will also learn new skills that they can apply in day-to-day life.

“These are skills that transfer well to the workplace,and the qualifications can be added to a CV.”

Would-be volunteers must be over 18. Find out more by coming along to Tesco in Ammanford between 11am and 3pm on Tuesday July 29, or contact Steve Kersley by ringing 07785 907728 or emailing steve.kersley@guidedogs.org.uk

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