I have recently embarked on

A project to discover more about

Certificates of Visual Impairment.

I have been asking people two

Simple questions.


When did you get your certificate?


Did you have to ask for it or was

It offered?

I have collected quite a lot of

Information so far. However, the more I have

The more I have the better.

Can you help?

Contact me via the web site or pleas

eE mail me on



Baked salmon


To create a quick, tasty and slightly indulgent meal


As always check your immediate area for hazards

Lazy person principle

Gather all ingredients and equipment together

so that you can stay in one place whilst constructing your meal


Ingredients – Aldi salmon fillet, castello Spanish soft blue cheese, olive oil, green beans, celeriac, watercress,

Greek basil and chili garlic salt.

Equipment – oven pan, medium saucepan, foil, sharp knife, bowl for rubbish, small dish for oil,

eating plate, half-filled kettle and cooking basket


Ensure the work top is clear and clean.

Ensure chopping board and tray are at the work station

Place ingredients to the right of the tray

Place equipment to the left of the tray

Ensure there is hot water available

with a clean towel.

Place bowl for rubbish within reach.

Plug the kettle in within easy reach


skin celeriac,

Cut some into chips and put the rest aside.

Put chips into a saucepan, cover and put onto boil.

Turn the oven on for 170 C or gas mark 3.

Take oven dish and place a sheet of foil ,

big enough to wrap the fish,

in the bottom

Place fish, skin side down, on the foil.

Put a handful of fresh Greek basil on the fish.

Place thin layers of cheese over the herbs.

Wrap the whole in the foil.

Ensure the celeriac is boiling,

reduce to simmer for five minutes.

Turn off the heat and leave for five minutes [power saving]

By now the oven should be up to heat.

Remove the celeriac

Put a little oil in the dish and season with garlic and chili salt.

Roll the chips in the oil and place in the oven dish.

Place the oven dish ,with the foil

wrapped fish and celeriac chips,

on a middle shelf in the oven.

keep the oven at 170 C or gas mark 3 for

fifteen minutes and then turn off the power.

Do not remove the fish and chips [power saving]

In the meantime prepare the green beans by topping and if necessary tailing.

Place in the cooking basket.

Place in medium saucepan, cover the

beans with boiling water from

the kettle and put on the

hob to simmer. After five minutes turn off the

heat and leave beans in the water.[power saving]

Put the plate on the chopping board.

Put a handful of water cress on the plate.

Remove the basket of beans from the water, allow to drain fully and then tip onto the plate

Remove the fish and celeriac from the oven

This should be when the fish has been in the oven for a total

Of 30 minutes.

Carefully put the chips on the plate

Remove the foil and place the fish on the plate.

Grab a knife and fork and a glass of wine and eat.


Total preparation time about 40 minutes. Be sure to time the beans so that they start about ten minutes before the fish comes out.

Simple and very tasty and not over expensive.

6 July, 2022 13:48

I am very lucky.

I live in a delightful little Market town

At the foot of the pennines.

It has a lovely little stream running

Through it, rarely more than ten foot across.

It is swarming with fish and

Other wildlife and in its

Upper reaches you can

Find otters.

In the summer many of

The local kids play in it.

It runs a hundred yards from my

House and it is a general delight.

The news that Severn Trent chose to discharge 125 tons of raw sewage into this beautiful stream onlu a few miles upstream from the town was a little surprising.

It is so good to know that those

Who know better than us are so aware of our general welfare.

Well done Severn Trent.

help please

CVI AND CSSI/B in England

The Certificate of Visual Impairment

is Certainly Very Important to

anyone who has significant sight loss.

It would appear that many people with a significant

degree of visual impairment are totally

unaware of it. Even more worrying

it appears that not all ophthalmologists are

aware of them. Those who know

about the CVI do not seem to appreciate

how important it is for their patients.

The CVI is the royal road to registration and the subsequent support, and literally puts you on the map as far as the sight loss world is concerned.

Curiously , some people have been known to

refuse a certificate.

Up to 12% of certificate holders have

not gone on to register as sight impaired or

severely sight impaired/blind.

In addition to this there is one estimate that

only 49% of patients who qualify for a CVI actually

have them.

This is a shocking state of

affairs and the implications for

the sight loss support sector are


If we look at the role of the CVI and the rationale

behind it, then the grounds for dismay

are even more firmly rooted.

From the guidelines to ophthalmologists and

eye clinic staff published in 2017.

Purpose of the CVI form

1. The CVI formally certifies someone as sight impaired (previously referred to as partially

sighted) or as severely sight impaired (previously referred to as blind). With the

permission of the patient the CVI is shared so that their local authority or an organisation

working on their behalf, is able to make contact to offer and explain the benefits of

registration on a local sight register and to ensure support and services are accessible as

appropriate. 2. Sight loss can have a significant impact on a person’s independence and wellbeing. If the

person is not known to social services as someone with needs arising from their sight

impairment, the CVI acts as a formal referral for a needs assessment. Consequently, the

CVI should be seen as a significant step on the sight loss pathway, enabling people to

access support to help them retain or regain independence. Certification should therefore

not be seen as the end of the treatment journey for patients but as a gateway to support

and services.

3. On receipt of a CVI, in addition to providing an assessment of the patient’s social care

needs, the local authority or an organisation working on their behalf should also contact

the patient to offer and explain the benefits of registration. Registration is voluntary, and

whilst it is essential to obtain some benefits and concessions, it is not a prerequisite for

accessing support from social services.

4. Hospital clinic staff should explain the importance of certification and the sharing of

information with their local authority, their GP and the Royal College of Ophthalmologists

Certifications Office at Moorfields Eye Hospital. If the patient still does not consent to

sharing information they should be made aware they may miss out on valuable support

and information.

5. Completing and sending off the CVI in a timely manner is not only beneficial for the

patient but will enable community health and social care agencies to plan appropriate

services as part of local strategies such as falls prevention or loneliness and isolation.

6. If the patient has also provided consent to share the CVI form with the Certifications

Office at Moorfields Eye Hospital, the CVI will be used to record diagnostic and other

data that is used for epidemiological analysis and reported via an NHS England Public health indicators.

it is clear that the intentions

are there but the execution is on the whole poor.

Over the years I have met many

people who knew nothing about

the CVI or if they did had

to insist on one being issued.

I am currently carrying out a survey

to try and get an indication as to whether

this is typical or not. The data

so far indicates that the majority

of people have to ask and that on the whole consultants

are not very pro-active in offering the


I would be very grateful if anyone who reads this could help me collect the data.

If you , or anybody you know, has a CVI could you please provide two bits of information.


The year the certificate was issued


Whether the certificate was offered or had to be asked for.

Please contact me on


I have been gently admonished

For not explaining what a CVI is.

It appears it is not just the

Consultants who do not explain anything!

The CVI or Certificate of Visual Impairment

Is the bit of paper that the hospital gives you

When your sight deteriorates to a certain point. This

Will enable you to register with

the Local council as sight impaired or severely sight impaired/ blind.

Registration is optional. Before refusing to register take advice.

It is the road to support, benefits and protection.

If you do not have a certificate

And you cannot see faces clearly or you can

Only read with the Help of a magnifier


Whether you need to be given a CVI.

So far all my research indicates that more

Often than not you

Have to ask or insist.

This is something you

must find out about.

If you search for guidance

on issuing CVI you will find a

very interesting document.


Since beginning to lose

My sight I have met

Hundreds of people

Who do not know what

A CVI or Certificate of Visual Impairment

Is let alone have any knowledge of

The very real benefits, support or protections it

Can provide.

It is pretty obvious that the

System is broken, or if not broken,

Creaking very badly.

I am trying to gather information

As a first step to try and help

Revitalize the whole system.

It sounds very grand but as

We all know every journey has to

Start with that first step.

If anybody who reads this knows someone

Who is blind and has a CVI can you

Please ask them two questions.


When did you get your CVI


Was it offered by your consultant or did you have to ask

Both bits of information are important

If you do this please contact me at simon

Later in the week I will be posting information

About the CVI which you

Might like to share with any

Blind friends who might

Have sight loss to any degree.


Slow cooked belly pork


Slow cooker, sharp knife, chopping board [2],

Tin opener and wooden spoon


2 pieces of belly pork

Tin of sliced apple

2 onions

12 new potatoes

Bell pepper


Stem ginger or ground or lazy ginger



Roughly cut the onions after skinning, topping and tailing.

Cover the floor of the slow cookerwith onion

Change chopping boards

Cut belly pork into bite size pieces

Lay the belly pork on the onions

Pour the apples over the belly pork

Ensure even spread

Dust with cinnamon

Add the ginger to taste

Do not add liquid, the onions and apple will provide that


Put slow cooker onto medium heat

Stir contents gentlyAfter two and half hours turn down to low

Roughly cut the pepper

Destalk the mushrooms

Add potatoes to the slow cooker

After half an hour add the pepper

After 15 minutes add mushrooms leave for half an hour and serve

Total cooking time three and threequarter hours.

Should serve two and possibly more with more veg.


From: Penny Melville-Brown []
Sent: 22 June 2022 15:02
To: simon mahoney
Subject: Latest

Dear Simon,

In case you are interested – and please share with everyone you know:

Blind Designer

Super-moist boiled fruit cake free demonstration 1030 Monday 11 July. Register at:

Even blind people can design buildings: three house extensions and a house façade and internal redesign to my name. I just need someone expert in the materials and measuring to translate ideas into reality. The latest is the new shed to accommodate the sous-chef’s bike and all the internal fitting out to store lots of unwieldly garden implements. Nearly done and design virtually completed. The finishing touch is the roof façade, carefully scalloped to match the awning on the adjacent studio so everything matches.

It was a delight to cook with Sue, Chair of Open Sight Hampshire, to mark the centenary year of the charity supporting thousands of visually impaired people across the County. She introduced me to her vegan chocolate cake which, with the original cup measures, must be of American or Australian origin. While avoiding animal products, it is certainly not short of calories but did stay perfectly moist and moreish for a week when stored in the fridge. Would also make an excellent dessert when teamed with some summer fruits.

The demo of her cake and my very quick brownies’ll post the basic brownie recipe next week along with a gluten-free version sent by Rosemary in Australia)

Vegan chocolate cake.


1 cup (260g) unsweetened almond milk.

1 tablespoon cider vinegar.

2 cups (250g) plain flour.

1 and three-quarters cups (350g) granulated sugar.

Three-quarters cup (85g) cocoa powder.

2 teaspoons baking powder.

1 and a half teaspoons bicarbonate of soda.

1 teaspoon salt.

Half cup (80g) vegetable or coconut oil.

Two-thirds cup (200g) unsweetened apple sauce.

1 tablespoon vanilla extract or bean paste.

1 cup (250g) boiling water.

Chocolate ganache:

350g vegan dark chocolate bars, broken into small pieces.

1 and a half cups(300g) full fat coconut milk or coconut cream.

Pre-heat oven to 175C, Gas 4.

Oil two 9inch sponge tins, line their bases with baking parchment then lightly flour.

Mix the almond milk and vinegar and set aside to slightly curdle.

Place all the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and gently stir to mix.

Add wet ingredients (oil, apple sauce, vanilla, almond/vinegar mix) and whisk at medium speed to fully combine.

Reduce the mixer speed and gradually add the boiling water to produce a smooth but very runny batter.

Pour half the batter into each tin and cook for 40 minutes.

Allow to cool for 10 minutes at least before turning out of the pans.

Meanwhile, make the ganache by placing the contents of the tin of coconut milk into a microwave-safe bowl.

Heat in the microwave on Medium, ensuring that the solids melt rather than bubble over.

Mix in the chocolate and allow to melt and combine for a couple of minutes.

Whisk to smooth and fully combine.

Allow to cool and thicken for 30 minutes.

Spread about a third on top of each cooled cake, place one on top of the other before spreading the remaining ganache around the sides.

My Tips:

Weigh the empty mixing bowl. Weigh it again when all the ingredients have been mixed. Subtract the first weight from the second to give the total weight of the cake mix. Halve it to give you the weight for each separate cake. Easier for blind people than trying to guess the amount in each tin!

For the apple puree, a large peeled, cored and diced cooking apple could be gently reduced to a puree by cooking in a microwave with a very little water, allow to cool.

A standard tin of coconut milk was the ideal quantity.

Many more blogs, recipes, a free cooking booklet and links to the round-the-world adventure cookbook at

Best wishes,


Tel: +44 (0)1329 841814

Eyeway Conversations with Tiffany Brar

Hi each

Hi each


simont this might be of interest

From: George Abraham []
Sent: 04 May 2022 07:24
Subject: Eyeway Conversations with Tiffany Brar

In this episode of Eyeway Conversations, George Abraham speaks with Tiffany Brar, founder of Jyothirgamaya Foundation, a non-profit organization based in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala that trains blind people of all ages in Braille, mobility, basic computer use, and life skills.

Tiffany, who became blind as an infant due to oxygen toxicity, completed her primary education in England where she found an inclusive setup, doing things like other sighted children with a special resource person dedicated to her. But when her father was posted back to India, Tiffany found school difficult as she experienced segregation and isolation from students and teachers.

After completing her Bachelors in English literature from Government College for Women, Thiruvananthapuram, she started working for Braille without Borders as a telephone operator. Later she pursued her B.Ed in special education (visual impairment) after which she began running the Jyothirgamaya (meaning "leading to light") mobile school for the blind.

In 2020 Tiffany, became the first Indian to receive Holman Prize from the US-based organization LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired.

Tune in to listen to Tiffany’s journey and her dream of making the state of Kerala into an accessible space for people with disabilities.

To access the podcast transcript, click on link:


This podcast is brought to you by Score Foundation and supported by Cipla Foundation.

To support our work, kindly visit the link:

Eyeway Conversation with Preetham Sunkavalli

Hi each

Aniother from George. Always worth a listen


From: George Abraham []
Sent: 08 February 2022 06:50
Subject: Eyeway Conversation with Preetham Sunkavalli

Eyeway Conversations with Preetham Sunkavalli

In this episode of Eyeway Conversations, George Abraham speaks with Preetham Gandhi Sunkavalli, who works with a leading automobile company in Mumbai, as part of their Business Transformation team.

Preetham experienced vision loss at an early age due to Retinitis Pigmentosa. But he was fortunate to pursue a good education from mainstream institutions. His initial dream was to become a physicist but given the limited awareness and opportunities, he chose Economics and Management instead. An MBA from IIM Ahmedabad, Preetham learnt a great deal from his peers, faculty and the supportive system at the premier institute.

In a largely traditional automotive industry, clear communication and hard work has helped make a place for himself. Tune in to listen to his journey and aspirations of building inclusive brands and products for exceptional customer experience.

To access the podcast transcript, click on link:

This podcast is supported by BarrierBreak Solutions Pvt. Ltd