“I was stuck at home for 3 years, I am so glad to join Croydon Vision’s community!” PH.


February Newsletter 2021

How are you?

Really, how are you? This is a key question, and we are very much looking forward to hearing what you have to say. We sincerely hope you have embarked in 2021 with positivity and determination.

We have been discussing how we approach re-setting our goals during these unusual times to boost our confidence and increase our happiness.

Setting goals and planning for the future are essential aspects of our well-being, as these processes can help “combat the sense of helplessness and loss of control you’re likely feeling in the current environment” (Harvard Business Review, June 2020).

Here are four questions you can ask yourself to re-establish your goals:

  1. What is important to me in the near term?
  2. What can I control?
  3. What are the actions I can take right now?
  4. How can I build a community of support and accountability?

Natalie Appiah (Receptionist who joined in December 2020, previously a Member & Volunteer) says: “I’m looking forward to what 2021 will bring. I hope to continue to progress and grow in my professional life. I’m also looking forward to learning more as I’m currently taking a very interesting Counselling Course. I think 2021 is going to be a great year for myself and those around me!”

We are here for you so reach out if you need support or simply want to have a friendly conversation. We will be delighted to hear from you! 

“For a warm and ready smile, or a kind thoughtful deed, or a hand outstretched in an hour of need can change our whole outlook and make this world bright. Where just a minute before nothing seemed right.
It’s a wonderful world and it always will be, if we keep our eyes open and focused to see the wonderful things we are capable of when we open our hearts to God and His love”

(Helen Steiner Rice, American Writer)


Re-set With Inspiration & Creativity

In our previous page we quoted Helen Steiner Rice who was born in America and lived from May 1900 to April 1981.

Life was not always easy for Helen. Her father died in the Spanish influenza pandemic in 1918. Despite this setback, Helen went on to become a successful businesswoman which was rare in those days. She later married Franklin Dryden Rice, a banker. Franklin committed suicide in 1932 due to depression caused by the Stock Exchange crash in 1929. 

Helen started writing verses for greeting cards and by the 1960s her poems were receiving wide exposure in print and on television. Her books sold seven million copies and it is still possible to buy them today. Many people have found her poems inspirational, including Pope John Paul II, American President Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosalynn.

One of our Members read out one of the poems in her social group.

The poem “It’s a Wonderful World” (as quoted on page 2) written by Helen inspired our Member and cheered everyone up in the group.

Helen found that by writing poetry she could inspire and encourage others by expressing her deepest thoughts, feelings and emotions. Therefore people refer to Helen as “America’s beloved inspirational Poet Laureate”.

2020 was a difficult year for many of our Members, Volunteers and Staff. The lockdowns and social restrictions had a detrimental effect on mental and physical well-being. Reflecting on an inspirational poem helps us renew our spirits, treasure the things that matter and realise that this difficult period will pass, and life will slowly go back to some kind of normality again.  

Would you like to express your feelings and inspire others? Why don’t you grab a pen and get started? We would love to receive your poetry and re-set the year with creativity!

Anna Smith, Outreach & Progression Officer

A Beacon In The Dark

Croydon Vision Staff enjoyed a highly insightful and productive Bright Ideas Day on Friday 22nd January. The day included a Creative Writing workshop session led by Josie Robson, a wonderful writer.

The Team was moved by this inspirational story written by Odette Battarel, our Personal Development Officer. This very special ‘fairy tale’ resonated with such a positive impression, leaving us all feeling very connected, in line with this month’s theme of “re-setting and get going”. The story is called “A Beacon in the Dark”. It goes like this…

“Once upon a time there was a young woman called Sophie who lived in the old town of Croydon. She had a good life.

One spring day as she was sitting in her garden. She noticed that the trees seemed fuzzy and the flowers were dull and not so bright anymore. What was happening to her? Why could she not see so well anymore? What was she to do? She asked her family, friends, and doctor but no one knew.

Then came a time when she could not read anymore. She stayed at home and lost all her confidence. She had always dreamed of a life full of enjoyment and now here she was stuck at home feeling like her future was bleak.

One day when her mother came across a lady who had volunteered at a place called Croydon Vision. After a lot of encouragement from her mother, she mustered all her courage and made an anxious journey to Croydon Vision.

Sophie found herself in the Reception area where a lovely Receptionist was smiling and welcoming. Sophie immediately felt reassured and any fears vanished. Sophie was introduced to a wise man who spoke in a kind voice about ‘Access to Work’ and she also met a wizard with red hair who showed her amazing gadgets. Sophie realised that she would be able to use her mobile phone and computer again.

Sophie knew she had found her ‘Beacon in the Dark’, and that thanks to the support she was going to get from Croydon Vision she would be able to transform her life and make her dreams come true.

Croydon Vision Transforms Lives

I hope you enjoyed my ’fairy story’. Since I started my role as Personal Development Officer in October 2020, I have tried to act as a ‘helpful fairy’ by driving hope and gradually developing “The Voice of Croydon Vision”. I’m committed to helping Croydon Vision continue to be a ‘Beacon in the Dark’.

I have linked-up with partner organisations like the National Federation for the Blind, RNIB, Transport for London and Disability Rights UK to be kept informed of any initiatives and campaigns that concern blind and partially sighted people living in the UK.

In these difficult economic times, it is vital we keep fighting for our rights and continue the amazing work our predecessors started.  It is thanks to them that we enjoy, amongst other benefits, the Freedom Pass, Access to Work and financial support from the government.

Let’s make sure our issues and voices are heard, and that we dial-up our narrative as the true experts in matters related to the visually impaired community.

In recent months we have taken part in consultations on transport, urban design, housing and health. Furthermore, we have encouraged Staff, Members and Volunteers to shape Croydon’s future via a Council-led survey on Croydon’s Savings Proposals.

A few Members have reported the benefits of these consultations with comments such as: “Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to have my voice heard and share my experiences. I feel truly empowered and part of a movement for change”.

Thank you for your cooperation so far. Our issues really matter. Together we have a stronger voice and I look forward to re-energising and improving our community further by bringing even more voices together in 2021.

Odette Battarel, Personal Development Officer

A Stronger & Fairer 2021 By Demystifying Bias Bubbles

What else can we all do to ensure our voices are heard and drive forward positive change? A beneficial step in the right direction could be to ‘burst the bias bubbles’ we are exposed to on a regular basis.

Our partners at The Educational Development Trust and the RNIB have provided us with a platform for reflection in this area.  Have you experienced any of these ‘bias bubbles’ before? Get in touch!

Bubble 1. All blind people see total darkness:

Nope! 93% of blind and visually impaired people have some useful vision (source RNIB). For instance, a condition called retinopathy of prematurity is made of five stages, thus vision can vary for everyone that has it.

On several occasions, total strangers have said to me as I was walking down the street using my white cane: “But you are not blind”. They had assumed I was totally blind, and at times they implied I was ‘fraudulent’. Indeed, this comment was rooted in ignorance and lack of information hence the need for us to raise awareness and engage the community around us.

Bubble 2. Blind and visually impaired people can’t use technology:

Not true! Not only visually impaired people can use assistive tech, but they also often use it every single day of their lives. VI people can browse websites, shop online, talk to friends and family (to name just a few). Assistive technology (and mainstream technology as well), such as screen readers, magnification software/magnifiers, and Braille displays are all incredibly useful for people who are blind or visually impaired.

Three years ago, I met a man who had become visually impaired through macular degeneration. He must have been in his late sixties and told me his computer had been in his basement for the past two years as he could not read the screen anymore. I supported him to bring tech back to his life by introducing him to accessibility functions like magnification and speech-centred tools. His life was transformed!

Bubble 3. Blind and visually impaired people can’t be independent:

Nope! The fact that some people are not able to see doesn’t mean they can’t be independent. Visually impaired people can travel independently, have a thriving career, and live a busy and active life just with a few agile adaptations.

Bubble 4. Blind and visually impaired people can’t work:

No! With the right adjustments and support, people with sight loss can work just as well as sighted people. Access to Work provides reasonable adjustments to help in the workplace, such as assistive technology and equipment.

Bubble 5. You have to change your vocabulary when talking to blind and visually impaired people:

Nope! You won’t offend them if you say things that reference vision, such as: “I’m watching the TV”, “Have you seen that?” or “See you later”. They are more likely to notice if you try to change the wording of something when talking to them, and it would be awkward for everyone involved.

Bubble 6. Blind and visually impaired have limited opportunities:

Completely incorrect. It is possible for individuals with visual impairments to get a job in any field or industry that they desire given the correct technology, equipment, training, and support. There are visually impaired politicians, judges, CEOs, teachers, entrepreneurs, chefs, musicians, artists, journalists, athletes, and so much more. Just think of Andrea Bocelli, Claude Monet, Ray Charles, John Milton, and many more!

“No matter the level of difficulty, limitations tend to be self-imposed. Remember: You may lose your sight but not your vision” (Starfire Dynamics on Blind Entrepreneurs).

Are there any other bubbles you would like to burst? Please stay in touch and keep the dialogue going.

Look forward to hearing from you and building a stronger united voice!

Odette Battarel, Personal Development Officer

Meet Nadine, Volunteer & Community Officer

Hello! I am Nadine Thomas, the new Volunteer and Community Officer, and I am so excited to be here!

I have over 15 years’ experience working within Advice and Guidance across the public and private sectors. Throughout most of my career I have worked in customer engaging roles, managing a range of projects and campaigns. I have always been passionate about empowering communities, and helping people learn and connect with the right opportunities.

For the last couple of years, I have been fortunate to spend valuable time with my two young children and supporting their school community. This involved working with the local PTA (Parents & Teachers Association) across several interesting initiatives. Of course, I also immersed myself in the challenging role of home schooling during the first COVID-19 lockdown.

I have an uncle who was born partially sighted. By the time he was diagnosed in his early twenties he had become completely blind caused by a rare genetic condition. This gives me an emotional affiliation to the important work done by CV, hence I’m so excited to be on board!

  • Before joining Croydon Vision, the research I undertook about the charity has given me a “buzz” to be part of the great impact it has on the Croydon community, and I’m enthralled to learn more.
  • On Christmas Eve 2020 I had the pleasure of volunteering to help pack and deliver Christmas lunches. I was inspired and full of admiration for the Team’s passion to support and empower our Members.

I look forward to building new relationships and add meaningful value to CV. Thanks to those of you who have already guided and supported me as part of my induction and can’t wait to meet the rest of you. See you soon!

Nadine Thomas, Volunteer & Community Officer

Service Enablers Shaping The Future

The focus group unlocked many great ideas and a sense of connection between Members at Croydon Vison, and it propelled our journey towards further growth and connectivity. We are currently delving deeper on key questions such as:

·       Why? Only 27% of VI citizens of Working Age are in employment. We are committed to improving life chances and opportunities.

·       How? Driving political, structural and social change at a local level.

·       What steps can we take to improve? These will cover improved quality, reach and inclusion of sight loss services locally, amongst other plans of action.

At Croydon Vision we believe in co-design and co-production by encouraging active participation and open dialogue as we shape our future. On Wednesday 20th January, Croydon Vision Staff and our Service Enablers (Community Champions) enjoyed a highly interactive focus group session to continue to shape our services. Our Service Enablers influence decision making and activate effective change by having a saying in the ‘How’, not only the ‘What’. 

The focus group session involved:

  • A reflection on current services: How we assess, review, improve and design services that are relevant and up-to-date, and help us adapt to an ever changing landscape.
  • A discussion on PR opportunities to raise awareness of Croydon Vision: How we expand and enhance our network, and how strengthen our partnerships with others.
  • An exploration of further growth opportunities by making the most of current referral pathways and creating new routes of entry: How we encourage ‘word of mouth referrals’ from existing Members, Volunteers and Partners, and any new ideas.

A big thanks to our Service Enablers for their continued help, passion and commitment. Please contact us if you want to find out more about this recent focus group and future events.

The Power Of Personal Connections

Ceian Fairclough, a local resident, was recently in touch to share a captivating story about her interactions with Glen Brazier, a Service Enabler who proactively participated in the focus group we mentioned on page 9.

Glen is also our Advice & Advocacy Officer, and highly experienced in providing legal support to those in need. Ceian stated:

“I write to express my deepest gratitude to Croydon Vision for your recent support and assistance in bringing to an end a dispute I was having with a business since March 2020. I would especially like to acknowledge and thank Glen Brazier. Despite being stricken down with COVID-19, Glen was still willing to write a letter on my behalf which resulted in me receiving a full refund of a substantial deposit I had put down for an item.

After reading your Newsletter (December 2020 edition) and how Glen had supported another person resolve an employment issue, I contacted your organisation hoping he might be able to help me. I found Glen to be very warm, polite, calm, professional and encouraging. I was so pleased, as I had almost given up all hope of ever seeing my deposit again after 10 months of ignored phone calls and disingenuous emails in response to my enquiries. Please feel free to share my story. I believe others need to know and have someone advocate on their behalf when they feel as if their voice is not being heard”.

As Glen always says: “Blind people know other blind people, their networks and communities, and we will do whatever we can to support them. Together we are stronger”.

This story illustrates Croydon Vision’s openness and commitment to inspire and transform lives.

Youth Engagement Through Learning

“If we teach today as we taught yesterday, we rob our children of tomorrow” (John Dewey, American Philosopher & Educator, 1859-1952).

As we “live and learn”, it is important we reflect upon different ways of learning and reflective practice. The Millennial Generation consists of those born between 1982 and the early ’90s, while Generation Z consists of those born after 1995. Individuals in both generations are more technologically sophisticated and rely on hands-on activities (mainly digital) to reinforce their learning. 

These generations have easy access to streaming services so they can watch programming at their convenience on multitude of devices. They can spend up to 9 hours a day on a personal mobile, making them increasingly dependent on technology which has a direct influence on how they process information.

Furthermore, the new generations are very much aware of societal issues, mindful of the future and committed to key causes such as the environment. Visual engagement has become an effective learning practice, as it allows them to retain a large amount of information within a shorter period. This is important as their attention span is typically no more than 8 seconds long. 

Younger people are constantly engaged in sharing information by utilizing a multitude of platforms which can combat the lack of face-to-face, in-person interactions. They are empowered as they feel that what they are learning is beneficial to their future. This drives higher confidence and self-esteem as they remain anchored to a diverse and highly engaged population.

When planning activities for younger generations, please consider:

  • Using technology and complement activities with tablets/phones.
  • Encourage interaction with podcasts and You Tube videos, and incorporate practical activities that reinforce hands-on experience.

See you at our next event!

Mickella Hosannah, Children and Young People Officer

Building Adaptability & Resilience

Our Children and Young People continue to re-set and grow as we enter another phase of our development in February 2021.

With schools are currently closed, we have adjusted our activities calendar to run weekly remote sessions that keep our younger members socializing, engaged and learning.

Children have faced huge challenges as they get used to a completely new way of life. The activities they can take part in and how well they are able to stay connected to others will continue to play a major role in their lives. We are inspired by their agility, adaptability and resilience which are shaping confidence and building strong futures.

The ingenious technology of Zoom, for example, easily facilitates social interactions and contributes to their digital savviness. This regular use of online tools is beneficial for visually impaired or blind children as it encourages them to step out of their comfort zone through participation and practice navigating technology on their own.

Croydon Vision’s activities aim to:

  • Support mental health and physical well-being of young Members.
  • Enable young Members to feel safe.
  • Rebuild hope through consistency and a sense of positivity.

“I am in awe of the difference I have seen with my daughter since she joined Croydon Vision. Her confidence is growing, something we have struggled with in the past” (Mother).

This year we will see our young members becoming more self-sufficient in creativity, well-being and technology. Hopefully by summer 2021, they will be able to showcase their experiences in an art exhibition or a podcast in our Tech Studio.

Watch this space!

Mickella Hosannah, Children & Young People Officer

Grateful, Healthier & Stronger Communities

In previous pages we have seen compelling examples of inspirational community spirit. The communities that we live in and our social networks have a significant impact on our health and general well-being. Developing community spirit can act as a buffer against the negative effects of low socio-economic status and isolation (Health Foundation).

Community spirit brings communities together, supporting health and well-being, enabling residents to access health information, providing care and support, and empowering individuals to connect and make a positive difference. Promoting Eye Health and general Physical Health are part of the ‘glue’ that strengthens our networks.

At Croydon Vision we endeavour to reach out, connect, support and empower our Members. We can do this thanks to the generous support and kindness of our Donors, Members and Volunteers.

A big THANK YOU to recent donations which ensure we can continue to transform lives:

Caroline & Peter Close, Margaret Wilson, E D Schweitzer, Shirley C Wright, H C Tyson, A A Botting, G W Simpson, Selsdon Baptist Church, R Wragg and Masonic Charitable Foundation, and to other Funders and Partners.

And another massive THANKS to those that donated towards our “No One Left Behind – Christmas 2020” campaign. We have raised 95% of our target so far and keep going! Thanks to Glen, Christine, Alex, Heather Bailey, Gordon Bull, Coversure, Lola, Hilton, Michael Barbour and many other kind souls.

Improving Physical Health & Well-being

In addition to managing our Eye Health as per our previous page, we must not overlook the critical importance of staying physically fit and healthy as encouraged by research and medical advice:

“Compared with sighted individuals, people with visual impairment have a higher prevalence of chronic conditions and lower levels of physical activity” (British Medical Journal).

Although technically February is still in winter, we will be seeing the days slowly getting longer and early signs of spring all around us. Why don’t you take advantage of those fine days to go out?

If you have slightly lost your confidence during this latest lockdown, then set yourself some realistic goals, like only go out of your front door and a few steps down the road for a bit, and then come back home again. Perhaps after a while you can progressively build a longer walk around your neighbourhood.

And when the weather reminds us it is still winter, then why not do some exercises at home? Frances Cullen (our Chair of Trustees) has kindly recorded some exercises for the Talking News, and Odette Battarel has been leading a fitness programme called Fit and Fab Project.

We are inspired by Kara who is an integral part of Fit and Fab and says: “Thank you! I haven’t exercised for a while and thoroughly enjoyed getting active”.

And Sophia mentioned: “I found all exercises good and helpful. Thank you for the hard work you are putting in these Fit and Fab classes!”

What are the health benefits of exercise? Here are some friendly reminders post-Christmas. Please contact us if you would like to receive more information or discuss further.

  • Help you control your weight. Along with diet, exercise plays an important role in controlling your weight and preventing obesity. To maintain your weight, the calories you eat and drink must equal the energy you burn.
  • Reduce your risk of heart diseases.Exercise strengthens your heart and improves your circulation. The increased blood flow raises the oxygen levels in your body. This helps lower your risk of heart diseases such as high cholesterolcoronary artery disease, and heart attack. Regular exercise can also lower your blood pressure.
  • Help your body manage blood sugar and insulin levels. Exercise can lower your blood sugarlevel and help your insulin work well. This can cut down (and/or manage) your risk for metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
  • Improve your mental health, manage stress and lift your mood. During exercise, your body releases chemicals that can improve your mood and make you feel more relaxed.
  • Help keep your thinking, learning, and judgment skills sharp as you age. Exercise stimulates your body to release proteins and other chemicals that improve the structure and function of your brain. It also improves your sleep.
  • Strengthen your bones and muscles. Regular exercise can help kids and teens build strong bones. Later in life, it can also slow the loss of bone density that comes with age. Doing muscle-strengthening activities can help you increase or maintain your muscle mass.
  • Reduce your risk of falls. For older adults, research shows that doing balance and muscle-strengthening activities in addition to moderate-intensity aerobic activity can help reduce your risk of falling.

Why don’t you check this list on a daily basis to see if you are on track? Here is to a Fit & Healthy 2021!

Exciting New Tech In 2021

Earlier in 2020 a new wearable technology was launched: The Envision Glasses.  These are like a pair of glasses with a built-in camera that uses AI (Artificial Intelligence) to read out text, recognise faces and scenes, and make a video call sharing the camera feed. It even reads handwriting!

As we enter 2021, this exciting technology is gradually finessed and enhanced by building upon users’ experience and developmental feedback.  They require a smartphone to pair with, and the phone is the link with the Internet and the outside world. The glasses are based on Google Glasses, a wearable mainstream camera that has the Envision software loaded onto it. The touch bar on the right arm allows you to control the device through flicks and taps. With all this they do come with a hefty price tag of over £3000.

The Envision App is available to use on any compatible smartphone.  There is a free trail and then after that 10 actions a month are available for free otherwise there is a subscription in monthly (99p), yearly (£19.99) or lifetime (£99) versions.  We are hoping that as AI and smart glasses become more widely used the price will go down. You can find information here https://www.letsenvision.com/envision-glasses or contact us to discuss further.

In the meantime, keep sharing your feedback as this will help us improve our IT and Tech services.

“I am so pleased Ola came. He showed me some things on the iPad and phone. Ola was very patient and the right person for that job. I showed him my kitchen and I will be very happy to do a cooking programme in the future (Facebook Live). Please add me to your Volunteer Team” (Shalini)

Katherine Turner & Ola Ogunyanwo, Resource Centre & IT

Croydon Vision Stories That Matter

R.I.P. This month we commemorate the lives of these much loved Members who have sadly passed away. They provided our Team with great joy, kindness and many happy moments:

Anetta Foune

Ann Windhauser

Mary Burt

Michael Rose

Ronald Marshall

Our thoughts and prayers are with their families and friends at this difficult time. We honour their memories and will always keep them close to our hearts. We are so incredibly grateful. The stories of Anetta, Ann, Mary, Michael and Ronald will be part of CV’s magical fabric forever.


We are also grateful to all the Members and Volunteers that keep sharing their feedback and comments with us. Together we are stronger, and your insights will always ‘make us better’.

Our Befriending Team continues to receive comments such as:

“It’s so wonderful to be remembered. Thank you for your ongoing calls and support”.

If you feel you could benefit from additional support to strengthen your mental and emotional well-being, why don’t you join our Talking Therapies programme led by Vanessa Gordon? Call us to discuss.

“Vanessa is very warm, kind and makes you feel comfortable. She uses very positive techniques to get you motivated. CV are lucky to have her” (Jane)

“A valuable service that I would highly recommend. Vanessa is overall very good. I would have like more and longer sessions” (David)

“Very good sessions. Vanessa is a good listener” (Brian)

February Quiz – Let’s Beat the Winter Blues 

This month’s super fun and twisted quiz is all about what or who made changes to their original names. Let’s take number 1 as an example. Jif, a household cleaning product, changed its name to Cif in 2001 in order to align marketing and product categories.

Have a go and best of luck!

  1.  Jif
  2.   Opal Fruits
  3.  Marathon
  4.  Oil of Ulay
  5.  Abbey National
  6.   Datsun
  7.  Royal Mail
  8.  Reg Dwight
  9.  Priscilla white
  10. German Shepherd
  11. Shilling
  12. Archibald Leach
  13. Persia
  14. Tiger Bread
  15. Belfast Airport
  16. Liverpool Airport
  17. Mayday Hospital
  18. Norma Jean Baker


1 – Cif; 2 – Starburst; 3 – Snickers; 4 – Oil of Olay; 5 – Santander;

6 – Nissan; 7 – Insignia; 8 – Elton John; 9 – Cilla Black; 10 – Alsatian;

11 – Five pence; 12 – Cary Grant; 13 – Iran; 14 – Giraffe;

15 – George Best Airport; 16 – John Lennon;

17 – Croydon University Hospital; 18 – Marilyn Monroe.

Was this fun? Contact Reception and let us know the types of quizzes you would like us to publish.

February 2021 Dates For Your Diary

Please contact Reception before arranging a visit. Thank you!

By Appointment   Only

Monday – Thursday

Resource Centre, IT Sessions Advice and Advocacy.

By Appointment Only

Monday – Friday


Outreach Home Visits, please contact Reception to arrange a visit.

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday


Talking Therapies will currently either be virtual and/or over the telephone. Vanessa (our Counsellor) is open, friendly and enjoys meeting new people. If you would like to find out more or book an appointment, please speak to Reception.

Low Vision Clinic by Moorfields  


From mid-February

Please book directly via Moorfields, but do let us know if you need any guidance on this.

Croydon Vision Low Vision Clinic (Fiona Hazell)


Date TBC

Low Vision Clinic, please continue to monitor future Newsletters for the next date or contact Reception.

Thursday 11th and Friday 12th March – 11:00 – 13:30

Living with Sight Loss Workshops

Tuesday 13th April:  Forward planning! Our Chiropodist (Joy) will be in from 9:00 am onwards. Please book through Reception.

Facebook Live Events Every Thursday at 4pm:

·       4th February – All about Tech with Odette/Ola.

·       11th February – Eye Health with Hussain Khambati (Lead Optometrist, Moorfields South Division).

·       18th February – All about Volunteering with Nadine.

·       25th February – Cooking with Isha.

Check our website, Twitter alerts, Members Bulletins and Reception for exciting updates.


Eat Well, Live Well & Age Well


This month we have adjusted the menu to two main dishes per day.

We are trialling this as we have noticed a varied demand for certain categories (meat, vegetarian and fish), and would like to spread these out to provide the best service as possible with minimum food wastage. Please note the cost for lunch is £5 per meal.

All menus include main course and dessert.

We welcome your feedback, new ideas and recipes to help us enhance our lunches.

Bon Appétit!


Tuesday 2nd February

Meat: Roast beef with roasted parsnips, pigs in blankets and mixed vegetables (veg) with gravy
Vegetarian: Stuffed peppers with Mediterranean veg and couscous

Dessert: Apple crumble or fruit salad


Thursday 4th February

Fish: Fish pie with seasoned veg
Vegetarian: Chinese styled fried rice

Dessert: Jam sponge cake or fruit salad


Tuesday 9th February

Vegetarian:  Pasta with tomato and mixed pea Swedish balls
Meat: Lasagne with steamed veg

Dessert: Cherry trifle or fruit salad


Thursday 11th February

Fish: Cod in breadcrumbs with mash and beans
Vegetarian: Quorn in breadcrumbs with mash and beans

Dessert: Flapjacks or fruit salad


Tuesday 16th February
Happy Pancake Day!

Vegetarian: Gratin Dauphinois (potatoes baked in milk, cream and seasoned with mixed herbs)
Fish: Pan fried salmon served with potatoes and vegetables

Dessert: Pancakes with fresh strawberries and cream or fruit salad


Thursday 18th February

Meat: Roast chicken served with roasted parsnips, pigs in blanket and steamed vegetables and gravy
Vegetarian: Lentil stew with mixed veg

Dessert: Tiramisu or fruit salad


Tuesday 23rd February

Vegetarian: Ratatouille (aubergines, courgettes, tomatoes and peppers) served with rice
Fish: Baked haddock served with potatoes and steamed vegetables

Dessert: Baked apples or fruit salad


Thursday 25th February

Meat: Chicken curry with rice or potatoes
Vegetarian: Yellow split pea curry with rice or potatoes

Dessert: Jam sponge cake or fruit salad


Thanks to those of you who have been in touch with feedback:

  • A general sentiment expressed by most of you is: “Gratitude for the lovely meals. CV’s food service really makes a difference”.
  • “The puddings are lovely” and “This service makes things much easier for me. If I come back from an appointment, I don’t need to worry about shopping and can have a much needed rest”.

Also, we remember Christmas Eve 2020 as a day full of fun and team-work! In addition to the well-received Christmas dinners, we sent cards and other gifts:

“What a lovely idea for sending out a talking Christmas card. It was such a lovely surprise and so thoughtful. On behalf of my mother Irene Davey, she would like to say a big thank you for what you have done and achieved in this difficult time” (Jenny an Irene)

“Thank you so much for my super shirt delivered by Croydon Vision. That was so kind of you all. Totally unexpected.  My Christmas card is beautiful too with such lovely words. You all do such a wonderful job. I congratulate you all. I feel it a privilege to be a volunteer” (Sue L)

Staff Team Details

As we have welcomed new members of Staff to our Croydon Vision Community, we thought it would be wise to share this contact list again. Reception Main Number – 0208 688 2486.


Susanette Mansour


Via Reception




Katherine Turner

Resource Manager

Extension 5

Natasha T Campbell

Operations Manager

Extension 9

Project Officers



Natalie Appiah


020 8688 2486

Glen Brazier

Advice & Advocacy

Extension 3

Mickella Hosannah

Children & Young People

Mobile Phone

Odette Battarel

Personal Development Officer

Extension 2

Ola Ogunyanwo

IT Facilitator (Outreach)

Extension 5

Nadine Thomas


Volunteer & Community Officer

Extension 6

Core Staff



Nataliya Lavitskaya

Finance & Database Officer

Extension 7

Isha Koroma

Cook & Member Support

Via Reception

Dave Woodin

Driver & Member Support

Via Reception

Gyles Gordon (GG)

Driver & Member Support

Via Reception

 At the end of January we will say good bye to Anna Smith (Outreach & Progression Officer), Ade Ogunsanya (Facilities Officer) and Ines Canellas-Jager (Business Development Manager). They are all embarking in new journeys of growth. We thank them for their support and wish them all the best for the future!

Your Input Matters

We always love receiving your feedback and comments.  As we mentioned in the January 2021 Newsletter, we are committed to improving the presentation, format and content of our Newsletter and Talking News, and will be making favourable improvements in 2021. We welcome your contribution to this meaningful dialogue in the weeks ahead, and would like to thank you in advance for your time.

  • Think about the topics and format that work well for you. Is there anything that we are missing? Are any sections irrelevant? What changes would you like us to make? 

As you know from our previous Newsletter, it will be sensible and inevitable for us to introduce minor fees to cover basic operational costs such as printing using an external facility, editing and tech design. This will part of our goal to become a more sustainable and resilient organisation. 

  • Think about how much you would be prepared to pay for an annual subscription for the Newsletter and the Talking News as independent items, and/or how much for a combined annual package including both the Newsletter and the Talking News. Look forward to discussing in the coming weeks!


 We welcome your submissions for the March 2021 ‘Spring Brings Hope’ Edition by 12 noon on Monday 15th February 2021: Newsletter@croydonvision.org.uk. We look forward to a bit of sunshine as we get closer to Easter!

Jan 28, 2021

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