Online Support Sessions

Image says 'Visionary Online Sessions' and shows a network of people connected through a webinar. There are 3 people in a circle connected to a person on a computer screen as well as 3 people on the right and 3 on the left.

In response to our members and what you want to see, we have developed a programme of online support and training sessions. You will find the current programme and joining information below.

Missed any of our previous sessions?

Catch up on any sessions you have missed, including any recordings and resources shared.

These sessions are free to Visionary members

We would like to remind you that most of our sessions are open to your staff, volunteers and Trustees, not just CEOs so please do share details of these sessions with your teams.

Subscribe to mailings

If you would like to receive weekly mailings of the online sessions and hear about new and upcoming sessions, subscribe here. We will also send you our fortnightly briefings with news and events.

Register for online sessions

All online sessions are on Zoom so you need to pre-register by clicking on the title of the session below. This will only take 1 minute and you can even do it just 2 minutes before the session! If you have previously registered for any of our regular sessions, there is no need for you to register again, just use the same joining link, i.e. if you have registered for the CEO weekly support session, you do not need to register for future CEO weekly support sessions. However, you will need to register if you wish to join a different session, such as the Trustees forum. If you have any concerns or problems with joining any of our events or would like a reminder of your joining details for a session, please do just get in touch by email or call 0208 090 9264.

New series of specialist sessions

We have a number of new sessions in a series of specialist sessions for our wonderful members:

  • Big Issues sessions for CEOs and other relevant staff – Two hour sessions of high level strategic conversations to help leaders adapt, learn and innovate with each other and use that learning to create positive change within their organisations.
    • Financial Remodelling for CEO’s and senior finance staff (took place 22 February)
    • Governance – fit for purpose in the new world for CEO’s, chairpersons and vice chairs (took place 22 March)
    • Changing Cultures and Structures for CEO’s and senior staff (fully booked)
  • Legal series with legal experts from RNIB
    • Understanding disability discrimination
    • Understanding community care
    • Overview of welfare benefits to support people living with sight loss

See below for further details.

Schedule of online sessions

Monday 12 April, 1pm to 2pm (monthly)
Finance Forum
A regular opportunity for all involved in the financial management and oversight in their organisations to simply connect, share and develop. This forum is more about the how you manage finances i.e. accounting, practical budget management, cash flow, financial systems/software used etc. Experienced in financial management but new to charity accounting? Then simply come along and discuss with others queries from how to monitor restricted income spend to the charity SORP.

Tuesday 13 April, followed by 20 and 27 April 10am to 11am (weekly)
CEO weekly support session
Our regular session for CEOs. Some sessions will be open sessions with no agenda and others themed sessions. Dates and details of themed sessions to be confirmed.

Tuesday 13 April, 12pm to 1pm (monthly)
Rehab Forum
Our regular forum for any members involved in delivering rehab services. The aim of the forum is to provide you with a space to regularly share new ideas and support each other through these difficult times. It will be an opportunity for you to connect with other people working in rehab who are facing similar challenges to talk about real life practical solutions.

Tuesday 13 April, 4pm to 5pm (monthly)
Trustees forum
Whether you’re an experienced trustee or new to the role, then please do consider joining this forum to connect, share and develop with trustees from across the Visionary network. The session time is broadly split in two parts. Firstly, we will discuss a particular issue relevant to trustees. Secondly, there will be an open session to discuss any matters trustees wish to explore. Whilst facilitated by Visionary, this forum is very much aimed at creating a secure, interactive, trustee led space for trustees to share their experience, questions, challenges and learning with others.

Thursday 15 and 29 April, 10am to 11am (fortnightly)
Operating a sight loss charity during COVID-19 *New session*
An opportunity to simply discuss anything related to operating your organisation during these COVID-19 affected times. Recent discussions have covered vaccines and handling staff/volunteers/service users who aren’t vaccinated, COVID-19 testing in the workplace and the health and safety assessments needed when opening the office or delivery centre. The session is open to any staff member or trustee of a Visionary member, so do consider joining the session and exploring issues together. And the session continues to be supported by experts on HR, Health and Safety and legal matters. Click on the link above to register. No need to submit questions or queries in advance, just turn up on the day with them – however if you’d rather ask them confidentially or simply have a more urgent query then please contact us at the Visionary email. Also visit the Visionary website for resources.

Thursday 15 April, 10.30am to 11.30am (bi-monthly)
Small organisations
Join other leaders of small organisations at this informal session. It’s a space for small organisations to meet and share their challenges, frustrations, ideas, opportunities and successes. Led by CEO of Wakefield District Sight Aid, Hayley Grocock.

The last session included discussions on staff vaccinations, managing workload and time, staff well-being, outsourcing IT/ HR, and Trustee/ Board development in terms of lived experience, engagement and knowledge.

Tuesday 20 April, 1pm to 2pm (New – one off)
Launch Event for British Blind Sport Children’s, Young People and Families
British Blind Sport’s exciting launch event about the First Steps project and virtual activities for children, young people and families will be discussed by Alex Pitts, National Partnerships Manager and Jane Jacobs, First Steps Officer. They will also tell us all about their new, upcoming virtual event which will be hosted with Visionary in June 2021. There will be a Q and A session at the end.

Thursday 22 April, 1pm t0 2pm (monthly) *New session*
Children, Young People and Families Peer Support Forum
This new monthly forum, provides an informal space to share ideas and experiences of developing and delivering services for Children, Young People and Families. We know this is a important area of service delivery which can also be emotionally challenging. This forum will provide a safe space to share concerns, challenges, successes, ideas and gain support from your colleagues across the Visionary members.

Thursday 22 April, 2pm to 3pm *New session*
Understanding disability discrimination
This session offers an introduction to disability discrimination. By the end of this session staff will have an understanding of what ‘disabled’ means, the types of discrimination and what rights blind and partially sighted people have under the Equality Act 2010 and the DDA 1995.

This session will be delivered by RNIB’s Legal Rights Service solicitor, Anita Marshall.

Monday 26 April, 2pm to 4pm (New – one off in series of Big Issue sessions)
Changing Cultures and Structures for CEO’s and senior staff (Fully Booked)
Cultural change during Covid: how do we build connections and a flexible approach while staff are working remotely, and we are leaving our long term office home? This organisation completed its strategy and restructure in 2020, these both brought significant change. They recognise that to deliver their strategy and embed the changes, they need to focus on their people and culture.

High level strategic conversations to help leaders adapt, learn and innovate with each other and use that learning to create positive change within their organisations. Discussions will take place with colleagues who are facing similar issues. There will be a 15 minute break in the two-hour session.
Please note, you should have a specific interest in this subject area and be able and willing to contribute. Sessions will follow a structure which will be circulated in advance to allow for meaningful engagement. Numbers will be limited to twelve participants.

Tuesday 4 May, 3pm to 4pm *New session*
How to care for yourself while supporting others
Caring for ourselves is no longer a luxury for caregiving staff, managers and leaders; it’s part of the job. We cannot be our best for others when our own energy tank is low to empty. This session will explore:

  • what is care of self for staff across all levels of an organisation?
  • how does it benefit the organisation and those we support ?
  • how do you do it?

We will cover how to weave selfcare practices into your workday so you can role model how to adapt and build physical and emotional resilience in uncertain times.

NOTE: Places are limited to 14 people so pleasure ensure you reserve your place soon.

About Charley: Charley Gavigan: Co-founder, counsellor, therapeutic coach and facilitator at Brave Your Day. Charley has accrued over 30 years therapeutic and leadership practice in the UK and USA third sector, namely with ChildLine, Save the Children, Women’s Aid and Scottish Drugs Forum. Charley now specialises in mental wellbeing and resilience training, consultancy and therapeutic support to individuals, staff and organisations to fear less and brave more.

Thursday 6 May, 10.30am to 11.30am (monthly)
Tech forum
This forum is our regular session designed to provide an informal space to share ideas and experiences of designing and delivering tech services. We know this is a dynamic area of service delivery where shared innovative practices could be of huge benefit to visually impaired communities. The forum is open to any Visionary member/staff and will be facilitated by Mark Owen and David Quarmby of Kirklees Visual Impairment Network.

Thursday 6 May, 1pm to 2pm (monthly)
Fundraisers forum
Aimed at fundraisers of all levels, this forum will provide fundraisers with a platform to collaborate and share ideas to benefit local sight loss organisations. The group will discuss what has worked and what hasn’t, new fundraising ideas and opportunities as well as successful campaigns and marketing pitches. The session will be facilitated by Sue Piper, Head of Fundraising at Kent Association for the Blind.

Thursday 20 May, 2pm to 3pm *New session*
Understanding Community Care

This session provides an overview of the types of community care services available, how to access them and the common challenges experienced by those living with sight loss in securing the appropriate level of support.

This session will be delivered by RNIB’s Legal Rights Officer, Danny Dooney.

Wednesday 2 June, 11am *New session*
British Blind Sport in partnership with The Workshop Company and Visionary, brings you a virtual juggling workshop session as part of the First Steps Project.
(Link to be shared after launch, 20 April – Families can register)
Children will be taught using tea towels and pairs of socks. Therefore, they will need to have 3 clean tea towels ready and 3 pairs of the children’s own socks. Children 6 years and under only need 2 clean tea towels. children 7 years and older can use both the tea towels and the socks.

For those children registering that are not already registered with First Steps, the registration link will direct you to register, so you can receive a First Steps resource pack (registration is Free). This pack contains, Audible Ball (aka Jangles), Exciting Activity Booklet, Progress Stickers, Progress Poster and 1-1 support from our First Steps Officer.

Thursday 24 June, 2pm to 3pm *New session*
Overview of welfare benefits to support people living with sight loss
This session offers an overview of the range of welfare benefits that someone living with sight loss may qualify for, with a deep dive into Personal Independence Payment (PIP), how to access benefits and when and where your service users can get help with challenging a negative decision.

This session will be delivered by RNIB’s Legal Rights Officer, Dominic Mile.




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