Paul Debenham (centre) presents a cheque for £1,000 to Josh Bartholomew and Barbara Dunn of Vision Norfolk

Masonic Fundraising Boosts Support For County’s Vision Impaired Young People

Children and young people in Norfolk living with sight loss have received a boost following a year of fundraising by St Benet Masonic in Wroxham, which has raised £1,000 to support the work which Vision Norfolk does to support vision impaired young people and their families.

The current Master of the Lodge, Paul Debenham, visited the charity to hand over a cheque for £1,000, money raised by members of the lodge during his term as Master.

Mr Debenham chose Vision Norfolk as his cause for the year as he has a close personal connection with the charity; his nine year-old son Mikey was born blind in one eye due to optic nerve hypoplasia, and has reduced vision in the other eye.

Mr Debenham works as the glaucoma co-ordinator at the James Paget Hospital in Great Yarmouth, so has first-hand experience of the issues around living with sight loss through his job as well.

“Vision Norfolk provides an amazing support network for children, and the events they organise are always fun, allowing the young people to interact with others who have issues with sight,” said Mr Debenham.

“I am extremely proud to be able to give something back to this amazing charity which is very close to my heart.”

Receiving the cheque, newly-appointed children, young people and families co-ordinator at Vision Norfolk Josh Bartholomew said, “The programme of activities and support which we are able to offer to vision impaired young people and their families is entirely dependent on the generosity of people like Paul and his Masonic colleagues, and we are very grateful indeed for this boost to our funds.

“Sight loss doesn’t just affect the young person, it has a profound effect on those around them.  When a child is registered with sight loss or vision impairment, it can be a worrying and confusing time, and can feel lonely and isolating.  We offer emotional and practical support to both the young person and their family.”

Further information about the support that Vision Norfolk offers vision impaired children, young people and their families can be found at

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