Welcome to the Summer Edition of Visionaries

Since my appointment as CEO in March 2016 I have particularly concentrated on getting to know the work of Fighting Blindness. By meeting with members and staff

I have gained clarity of understanding of the priorities of the members and the mission of Fighting Blindness as their representatives.

I was very fortunate to be able to participate at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) on April 16. This was a wonderful opportunity to engage with everyone in a most inspiring environment. I thought the level of engagement through the round table discussions was very effective and meaningful for those in attendance.

Now that the new Government is formed I can assure you that Fighting Blindness will be to the fore, in conjunction with the National Vision Coalition, in advancing the cause of the National Vision Strategy. Already we have sought meetings with the relevant Ministers to ensure the needs of our members are heard at the cabinet table.

In May we waved a fond farewell to our Head of Fundraising Tony Ward. Many of you will know Tony well as he has been involved with Fighting Blindness for many years as a member of the organisation, on the Board of Directors and as a valued part of the team here in the office. We wish Tony all the best in his new position with The Wheel. We also send best wishes to Clodagh Ryan, Senior Fundraising Manager as she heads on maternity leave. If you would like any information about our fundraising activities or would like to get involved in our many events, please contact Amanda, Emma or Mahon on 01 6789 004 or fundraising@fightingblindness.ie and they will look after you.

I remain keen to hear the views of our members as I see this as being crucial to ensure the continued relevance of the work of Fighting Blindness. Should you have particular matters that you wish to communicate to progress our work to Cure, Support, and

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Empower people in Ireland living with vision impairment and blindness, please feel free to contact me. I firmly believe that such consultation and listening is key to our existence and success as your representatives.

For now I wish you and your family an enjoyable summer.

Kevin Whelan, Chief Executive