Birmingham Vision works with a number of partnership organisations to support people with sight loss.
The trustees who donate their time on a pro-bono basis to support Birmingham Vision.
Our passionate and fantastic people who make up the Birmingham Vision staff team.
Denise McCormick - Rehabilitation Officer
Denise is the Rehabilitation Officer for Birmingham Vision. The aim of this role is to support and empower individuals living with sight loss to live as independent a life as they wish. Denise achieves this outcome by training people with sight loss in Orientation and Mobility, Daily Living Skills and communication/accessibility. These important skills can enhance the lives of individuals and help them retain or regain their independence.
Shazia has been working with Thomas Pocklington Trust since 2014 as a social inclusion and development co-ordinator. She has been working in the Sight Loss field for over 15 years and is visually impaired herself. She now works for Birmingham Vision as a Community Development Manager co-ordinating social groups, raising sight loss awareness within the BAME (Black, Asian & Minority Ethnic) communities and supporting individuals with social and cultural needs.
Talia Dewhurst is the Eye Clinic Liaison Officer for Birmingham Vision based at Queen Elizabeth Hospital. This is a new role for Talia after working as a support worker (visual impairment) for a year. She is very passionate about working with people with sight loss and encouraging independence in the community. This role includes giving information, advice and offering emotional support to patients newly diagnosed with an eye condition, it also involves discussing different kinds of support in the community then making referrals to organisations that may help each individual lead a more independent life. Talia can also explain the process of registration of sight loss (Certificate of Visual Impairment) and the benefits it may provide.
Russell Stephenson- Eye Clinic Liaison Officer (BMEC)
Russell is the Eye Clinic Liaison Officer (ECLO) at Birmingham Midland Eye Centre at City Hospital in Birmingham. This role includes giving information, advice and offering emotional support to patients newly diagnosed with an eye condition, it also involves discussing different kinds of support in the community then making referrals to organisations that may help each individual lead a more independent life. Russell can also explain the process of registration of sight loss (Certificate of Visual Impairment) and the benefits it may provide. Russell is visually impaired due to Retinitis Pigmentosa and has a Guide Dog called Sparks.
Luke Hedley - Sports Participation Delivery Officer
Luke has recently joined the Birmingham Vision team as Sports Participation Delivery Officer. Previously, Luke has worked for an organisation called Startwell as a Physical Development Consultant. They ran a combined physical development and healthy eating programme which was set up to try and tackle childhood obesity across Birmingham. This involved visits to nurseries, schools and Children's Centres to deliver high quality physical development sessions to the children, with the aim of making them aware of the importance of being physically active. Luke's role with Birmingham Vision will involve working with British Blind Sport to help develop and make new links and initiatives across the VI community within the West Midlands, with the aim of increasing participation in sport.
Philip Mills is a Chartered Management Accountant with 26 years of industry experience. He has worked in the construction, medical appliances, aerospace and engineering sectors in financial reporting and control roles. He currently heads up governance and controls for a division of GKN plc. Philip is registered blind as a result of retinitis pigmentosa.
Sue worked as volunteer for RP Fighting Blindness, for more than 20 years, including as Chair of the Cambridge Branch of the charity, and spent a period on the charity’s helpline. She is now the charity’s Engagement Manager and is passionate about working collaboratively with others to reach individuals and families affected by RP, to improve knowledge of inherited eye conditions, and to continually develop and improve high quality information and support services for patients living with sight loss. Sue has extensive knowledge of RP, including related syndromes and other retinal diseases and understands the impact of an inherited condition on the immediate and extended family due to her own personal experience of supporting family members (including her son) with RP.
After a 30 year career with the West Midlands Police, Sue undertook a career change and started working with assistance dogs. She had been a volunteer for hearing dogs for the deaf for several years helped to raise £5000 to sponsor a hearing dog puppy when her husband was president of a local Rotary Club. Sue returned to education and earned a Diploma in animal management which led to a job as an admin support worker for Guide Dogs Birmingham Mobility Team. After 9 months with Guide Dogs Sue was taken on as the Community Engagement Officer, working with Local Authorities and other organisations. Sue has a wealth of knowledge of the voluntary sector through involvement over the last 20 years in Rotary and Inner Wheel and other organisations she has worked with or been associated with through her personal and professional life.
Bernadette joined Birmingham Vision in April 2016, is very much looking forward to advancing the organisation during this exciting time. She works closely with the Trustees and with a small but dedicated staff team to ensure that a sustainable strategy is put in place to achieve the charity’s objectives and make sure that it is successfully implemented.
Bernadette’s experience is mainly within local government and health services, having managed Children's Centres, Short Breaks services, as well as implementing the SEND reforms and health commissioning. Her previous role before joining Birmingham Vision was Policy and Strategy Manager for Guide Dogs and Blind Children UK.
In her spare time, she enjoys films, live music, football and anything to do with Vespa scooters.
Sharon Billingham - Chair of the Board of Trustees
Sharon Billingham has worked in the sight loss sector since 2002 and currently works as Director of Charity and People Development for Thomas Pocklington Trust. Sharon was instrumental in establishing Birmingham Vision, serving as CEO for it’s first 12 months of operation.
Outside of work Sharon volunteers for a local retinitis pigmentosa group.