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Supporters have made us proud for Armed Forces Month

Published on 3 Jul 2024

June was a very poignant month in our calendar with both the 80th anniversary of the Normandy Landings and National Armed Forces Month.

We called upon our supporters to honour our brave D-Day veterans, along with all Service men and women who have made extraordinary sacrifices for our country. They did not disappoint us.

Ian's 'Blindfolded Bimble'

At the beginning of the month, blind veteran Ian organised a 6km 'Blindfolded Bimble' on the Isle of Wight.

Ian challenged walkers to pair up and take it in turns to complete 3km under blindfold while guided by their partner for the outward or return leg of the walk between Shanklin and Sandown.

A lady in a Blind Veterans UK t-shirt is blindfolded as she walks along a promenade with the sea alongside her. She has her arm linked with a man who is guiding her
A blindfolded lady being guided during the bimble
Ian wears a Blind Veterans UK t-shirt as he walks alongside his daughter. Ian is holding his white cane as they make their way along the promenade with the sea beside them.
Ian taking part in the Blindfolded Bimble
The group of walkers pose for a picture at Sandown Pier
A drink stop at Sandown Pier

Thirty people joined Ian for the walk which took around two hours to complete, among those were his two daughters who are nine and 13.

Ian hoped the challenge would give people a small insight into the impact of sight loss. He says:

"I'm sure the walkers were very glad to remove their blindfolds; for blind veterans like me that isn't an option."

As the walk took place just days after the 80th anniversary of D-Day, Ian asked each pair to raise a minimum of £80 for our charity.

Hadrian's Wall walk

Supporter Janine was joined by her partner and their two friends to walk the length of Hadrian's Wall.

Janine wanted to raise awareness of our charity this Armed Forces Month, as her dad died shortly after he discovered us and she wanted to ensure that other veterans get the support they need.

Her dad, Joe, had served in the Army with the Royal Anglian Regiment and had completed three tours of Northern Ireland during his service. 

He lost his sight due to macular degeneration in his late 60s. He was only 71 when he died and sadly the family only found out about the support available from us a few months before.

Janine is leaning against a marker point on the trail. She is smiling and wearing her Blind Veterans UK t-shirt
Day three and half way there

The group took six days to complete the walk from Carlisle to Newcastle. While on the walk, two poignant dates were marked, the 80th anniversary of D-Day and the first anniversary of Joe's death which Janine was sure to mark with a pint of Carling. Janine says:

"The support my dad was offered was amazing. He was really looking forward to getting involved with the charity. I believe that with the support of Blind Veterans UK, dad would have regained even more independence and I wanted to make sure that others who are eligible don't miss out.
"For me, raising awareness of the charity during Armed Forces Month was my biggest goal but we also raised money along the way."

Aberdeen Kilt Walk 

Rebecca walked 18 miles this Armed Forces Month wearing a kilt to say thank you for the support we have given to her grandad since he lost his sight.

Walkers, wearing an array of kilts, made their way from Duthie Park to Bellfield Park in Aberdeen in around seven hours.

Rebecca wearing her Blind Veterans UK top with her arms around the neck of her Granda Brian.
Rebecca and Brian

Walking in support of our charity, Rebecca says: 

"I chose to raise money for Blind Veterans UK because of the amazing support they have given to my Granda. Every time I speak to him, he tells me about his new adventures with the charity.
"He and my nana would stay together at the centre prior to her passing in 2020. When she passed away, my Granda lost a lot of his independence but being able to visit Llandudno helped him through the grieving process. Finding new friends, activities, and a sense of belonging has been a huge comfort to him."

Our supporters have challenged themselves and pushed themselves out of their comfort zone during Armed Forces Month. Have you missed Armed Forces Month but would like to take on a challenge in support of our blind veterans? It is never too early to start Planning to Remember.

Find out about Planning to Remember

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