Tatts Commitment - Blind veteran shows love for charity with tattoo
18 December 2015
A blind veteran from Surrey has demonstrated his love for the military charity that has helped him by getting its motto tattooed on his arm.
Peter Williams, 64 and from Staines-upon-Thames, decided to get the Blind Veterans UK motto - "Life Beyond Sight Loss" - tattooed on his arm as way of demonstrating the life-changing support the charity has provided him.
Peter is a former Army Royal Signalman and he started receiving support from Blind Veterans UK in 2007 after losing his sight due to optic atrophy and Horner's syndrome.
Peter says: "I started to lose my sight in the 1970s and it's been very hard. I'd never heard of Blind Veterans UK, or St Dunstan's as it was known then, and didn't know that they could help me."
Peter learned about Blind Veterans UK while talking with a man from his local sight loss organisation and decided to get in touch. He attended an induction course at the charity's Brighton centre and learned about the types of training and activities that were available to him.
He says: "The IT course I went on was the best thing I did by far. I'd never used a computer before but Blind Veterans UK trained me and gave me equipment to do it all for myself. It makes a massive difference to your independence.
"I now use my computer everyday which was provided by the charity. I also use lots of other equipment in the kitchen and around the home. Little things like a Dictaphone make a huge difference."
Since 2010 Peter has volunteered for Blind Veterans UK as one of the charity's ambassadors and travels to speak to various organisations and groups about his journey with the charity and encouraging others to find out if Blind Veterans UK can help them or someone they know.
He says: "I've done more than 40 talks to lots of different groups and I always end them by talking about the "Life Beyond Sight Loss" motto as it really resonates with me."
On a recent stay at the Blind Veterans UK Llandudno centre Peter decided that he wanted a permanent reminder of what the charity means to him and went straight to a tattoo parlour to get his special inking.
He adds: "I can't think of anything more appropriate. It says everything you need to know about the journey of me and every blind veteran the charity helps. I now point to it when I give my talks."
Peter is encouraging anyone who could be eligible for free help and support from Blind Veterans UK to get in touch with the charity.
Peter says: "If you or someone you know has sight loss and served just one day in the armed forces then get in touch. It might be the best thing you ever do."
Blind Veterans UK is the national charity for blind and vision impaired ex-Service men and women, providing vital practical and emotional support to help veterans, like Peter, discover life beyond sight loss. The charity has three centres in Brighton, Sheffield and Llandudno, and a network of welfare officers around the UK.