Having 1:1 support makes my outings hassle free

Mick Marr has been a Link Up service member for several years. It has enabled him to go to a variety of events he would otherwise struggle to attend on his own.

Mick, 72, lives in London and is registered blind. We spoke to Mick to find out how the Link Up service has made a difference to his life.

 

Getting to events easily

Mick has a passion for the theatre and music – and particularly loves visiting the Royal Albert Hall. But for someone who is blind or partially sighted some outings and activities are not always easy to get to.  This is where the Link Up service really makes a difference for someone like Mick.

 

He said: “Thanks to Link Up volunteers I’ve been able to go out to see rock, pop and classical music concerts, as well as theatre performances.”

 

“It’s great to get over obstacles easily, having 1:1 support makes my outings hassle free and I’ve met nice people.”

 

“I go to things by myself occasionally, but it’s always so much nicer with a companion – and all the volunteers are personable and interesting. You get their input into the event. It’s lovely to get another viewpoint for your activity.”

 

How Link Up works

“It is a very neat operation.”

Mick explained how simple and flexible the service has been for him. He emails the Link Up service with 2-3 events he is interested in attending. The service then matches him with a volunteer for each outing.”

 

“Sometimes you won’t get the same volunteer. The main advantage is that it is reliable and efficient. It’s been great to know that I can really rely on the service.”

 

“I imagine, for some people who are worried about going out by themselves, it will give them confidence they can get to their destination. It enables them to participate in local activities they might not have done previously and link up with the community. And for blind or partially sighted people it’s always great to have volunteers trained in guiding.”

 

The Link Up service during COVID-19

Due to Covid-19, the Link Up service is currently paused as we follow government guidance on social distancing. Mick said: “I’m looking forward to the time when we can get out again and I am able to use the service.”

 

Many of the opportunities available for someone like Mick would not be possible without the work of our amazing volunteers. So thank you.

 

About Link Up

Link Up aims to make events and activities accessible to blind and partially sighted people by providing 1:1 support from a volunteer. This could be for a walk, visiting a library or attending an event, or to participate in sports activities. To find out more email: volunteering@pocklington-trust.org.uk

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