Sensory Disabilities Support for Employment and Life

There is a lot of support in employment for those who are deaf or have hearing issues or have sight issues or are blind.  This is covered by the Equality Act (2010) where employers must make Reasonable Adjustments and cannot discriminate.  This, for example, could mean flexible start times, allowing assistance dogs, home working at times or having BSL support in all meetings, enlarged texted documents if you have sight issues.  Further, there is Government DWP Access to Work funding that can pay for BSL Interpreters at work, a communications worker, support workers, like note takers, specialist software, like Zoom or specialist equipment, like hearing loop systems and text phones.

There is also support for daily life, living independently, lots of technology support and leisure support.  In fact, support for all aspects of adult life.     

You may find the following links helpful:     

Employment/Life and sight/blindness information from RNIB.

RNIB explain the Government Access to Work Grant and the type of support in the workplace you can get if you have a visual impairment, like specialist computer equipment. 

Specialist Employment Support is a government employment scheme for those who have more needs than can be met by Access to Work.  They provide specialist support following a work capacity assessment.

National Deaf Children’s Society.  Topics covering money management, technology, benefits, health, work, communication support, education, gap years, volunteering, training, university and more.  

Deaf Unity has lots of informative articles, personal accounts, interviews and interesting projects.  There is the Deaf Learners Project helping those who are deaf through Further and Higher Education, a Deaf Careers section that includes jobs, a Role Models Project where they look for people to volunteer as role models to the young Deaf Learners Project.   

Buzz.  Website for deaf young people covering many life issues.   

Sign Live gives you access to a sign language interpreter 24/7, so you can talk to anyone via the app/website.  Useful at work on day-to- day.

Bucks Vision for Sight Loss.

VICTA.  For young people who are blind or partially sighted based in Milton Keynes.

Action for Hearing Loss.  Bucks Sensory Support Services.  Helps withinformation and guidance to help you overcome challenges, offering equipment on loan to help you stay safe and independent, daily living and mobility help.

Action for Hearing Loss National Charity Access to Work Grant Details.

NRCPD.  The register of communication professionals in the UK for those who are deaf or deaf and blind.

    Clarion Deaf Employment Support Services.

    MK Deaf Zone.  Lots of deaf social and sports clubs.

    Access Cards.  A simple way to show people your accessibility, disability needs.

    Young Deaf Activities, Bucks.

    Institute of British Sign Language.

    Association of British Sign Language Interpreters.

    British Sign Language Dictionary.

    Access to Work Grant to help you overcome disability at work video using sign language.  https://youtube/XtRMFxA-RVw

    Sign Language Discussion Forum provides lots of help with learning and practising signing.

    The RNIBoffers Technology Grants, so you can get needed technology to be more independent if you are registered blind.

    Synapptic.  Provides easy to use technology, tablets and phones for those with sight loss.


    Adapted radios for those who are blind.

    RNIB and Technology help.

    RNIB Practical Help to be Independent with Sight Loss, covering shopping, leisure, work, technology, young people (they have a Careers Magazine called Moving On for young people with sight issues and practical tips on the website, covering topics, like leaving home and cooking), benefits, technology and more.

    Optimal Vision.  Visual impairment equipment for everyday living.

    Optelec.  Visual Impairment equipment specialist in magnification products. 

    Macular Societylist UK second hand low vision items for sale.

    Sight Village is a UK exhibition for those who have experienced sight loss to find the latest products and services. 

    Dolphin Computers offers computer equipment for visually impaired persons. 

    Sight and Sound Visual Impairment equipment.

    Independent Vision for buying or renting visual impairment equipment.

    Bierley.  A membership club for borrowing electric magnifiers for those with a sight impairment.

    WESC.  A day and residential specialist provision for young people with sight loss and additional needs up to 25 years old.  This offers a specialist curriculum.

    Stagetext  provide theatres and arts venues with captions of their performances that appear on small screens.

    Vocal Eyes provide audio description to museums, galleries, theatre and heritage for those that have sight problems.

    Your Local Cinema subtitled local cinema listings. 

    Macular Society.  Supports those with Macular Degeneration, such as offering counselling services, treatment buddies, skills for seeing training, support groups, information, like on treatment.

    Attitude is Everything.  Deaf and Disabled Access to life music.

    Hearing Link Charity apps for hearing loss.

    Hearing Link Charity, Next Generation Hearing Service. So text phone users can contact hearing people.

    Hearing Links Charity Equipment and Hearing Loops.

    Hearing Links.  Charity Hearing Loss and Safety.

    Hearing Dogs for Deaf People.

    Guide Dogs.

    Assistance Dogs UK is an umbrella assistance Dogs Charity covering many assistance dogs charities, including Guide Dogs, Hearing Dogs and Dogs for Good.  Often dogs can be trained to help a person with a disability be more independent and this is often also the case with physical disability and also Autism.

    Afasic supports young people who have difficulties with listening, talking and understanding others.  The site has a huge section on post-16 support, covering all levels of education, social services, housing, friendships and relationships, safety, leisure, transport driving and more.  There are lots of videos and insights into personal experiences and experiences of living with a hidden disability, there is also a helpline support.

    Blazie is an assisted Technology Centre for blind and partially sighted people in Milton Keynes.

    Blind in Business. Blind in Business offers employment and training support for those who are blind or partially sited, helping with finding work, interviews and getting equipment. 

    Milton Keynes Reader Services.  Helps those with sight issues or other disabilities, like physical disabilities with reading and writing tasks.  Volunteers visit people’s homes to help.

    Sense, the Charity for those who are deaf and blind.

    Access You Tube was set up by Henshaws College, a further education college in Harrogate and there website makes You Tube more accessible if you have a visual disability as it removes adverts, has large text, works well with accessibility software, works with scream reads and increases independence when using the You tube

    Alternative Visions Coaching

    James is a coach, trainer and assisted technology specialist, offering visual impairment computer training, who is registered blind, following losing his sight in 2004.

    Blind Ambition is a Birmingham-based Charity set up by those who have sight loss or are blind.  Offers support with independence, getting involved in activities, emotional support, family support, rehabilitation, home visits, employability workshops, research projects, and much more.

    Seeability.  Specialised accommodation for people who are blind or have a disability.  Specialist support for visual impairment, eye care advice.  They also support learning disabilities and autism.  Their specialist support includes vision rehabilitation, physiotherapy, hydrotherapy, speech and language therapy and positive behaviour support.

    Total Communication is a communication service for deaf and deaf blind individuals in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire, Oxfordshire and Surrey.

    International Glaucoma Association provides information and literature on Glaucoma, a condition where the optic nerve is damaged causing some sight loss but when treatment is sorted, the extent of sight loss should be limited.

    Retina UKhas lots of information, a help line and support service, peer local and online support services, run by those trained in understanding inherited sight loss that also either have inherited sight loss themselves, or have a close relative that does.  The Charity is for those who have inherited sight loss, there is lots of information and signposting to other support and options, like genetic counselling and genetic testing, as well as how to get Social Services support from Sensory Impairment Teams of local Councils.