Group welcomes new chief officer

Dean Road Blind Society has a new Chief Executive ,Front Outgoing Chief Viv Wright with Zane the Dog,and Incoming Chief Executive Jackie Dartnall-Smith,pictured with members.Picture Richard Ponter.121102.
Dean Road Blind Society has a new Chief Executive ,Front Outgoing Chief Viv Wright with Zane the Dog,and Incoming Chief Executive Jackie Dartnall-Smith,pictured with members.Picture Richard Ponter.121102.

A SCARBOROUGH charity which helps people with sight problems is set to welcome a new chief officer.

The Scarborough Blind and Partially Sighted Society, based in Dean Road, will bid farewell to stalwart Viv Wright, who retires on April 5 after 22 years in the role.

The incoming chief officer will be Jackie Dartnall-Smith, who started at the charity last week for a “handover” period.

Viv said she will still be closely involved with the society, particularly with running the shop, and will be classed as a trustee from her retirement date.

She told the Evening News: “I have enjoyed it so much. It’s almost been my baby, as I’ve brought it from when we were seeing six people a week to what it is now.

“It’s so nice to be able to help people keep their independence.

“The society has made a lot of difference to people and I’ve made an awful lot of friends.”

Viv added that she has seen a great deal of change over the years, particularly in technology, saying the charity has definitely “moved with the times”.

Her last day as chief officer will be on April 5, when she will hand over to Jackie.

Jackie, whose husband David also works at the society as the IT trainer, has worked for charities for a number of years.

Her most recent role was with Advocacy Alliance, where she was a co-ordinator responsible for 70 volunteers.

She said: “I had eyesight problems last year and until you have them, you don’t appreciate what you’ve got.

“I was sat in church one morning and couldn’t see the screen properly.

“Not long after that I was in hospital having an operation for a detached retina.”

Jackie has raised funds for the society in the past and is looking forward to being more involved.

“She said: “I really want to take the society forward and help it progress.”