Annual Report

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My Eye Health Program

James Bardsley, Manager, Client Services

The My Eye Health Program (MEHP) commenced in South Australia in 2010 with the aim to raise community awareness about eye health, focusing on the early detection and prevention of eye disease.
Delivering more than 650 presentations in both metropolitan and rural areas, the MEHP has reached close to 15,200 people in South Australia.
Targeting a wide variety of groups within the community including service organisations, health care professionals and special interest sectors, MEHP presentations inform attendees about common causes of vision loss, including Age-Related Macular Degeneration, Diabetic Retinopathy, Cataracts and Glaucoma.
In addition, the program aims to educate and create awareness of eye health, including prevention, available eye-care services, referral protocols and vision loss management.
Working closely with the Aboriginal Health Council of SA (AHCSA) and the Adelaide Crows, in 2013/14 MEHP Community Educators also continued to look at ways to improve Aboriginal eye health.
The RSB and all MEHP program partners would like to thank His Excellency, Rear Admiral Kevin Scarce AO CSC RANR, the Governor of South Australia for his involvement as Patron of the My Eye Health Program in 2013/14.
With thanks to My Eye Health Program Partners:

  • Freemasons Foundation


  • Sight For All

I would give the My Eye Health Program presentation 5 out of 5, the information was beneficial and we were able to have some practical experience with the simulation glasses”

Health Care Worker

(Aboriginal Health Services)

RSB Guide Dog Service

Chris Muldoon, Manager, RSB Guide Dog Service

The RSB Guide Dog Service is the RSB’s most recent service development, established in 2006. To date, the service is proud to have trained 55 RSB Guide Dog and client working teams.

Breeding Program
The RSB Guide Dog Service boasts a successful breeding program, with Brood Bitches generously donated from guide dog schools all over the world, including Guide Dogs UK, Kansai Guide Dog School Japan, Asian Guide Dog Breeding Network (AGBN), Guide Dogs for the Blind Ireland, Guide Dogs Norway, Guiding Eyes New York, USA, Guide Dogs for the Blind USA San Rafael and Guide Dogs Queensland.
In 2013/14 the S, T, U, V, W and X Pups were welcomed! A phenomenal total of 36 pups that all have the breeding pedigree to become future RSB Guide Dogs.

Puppy Education
Puppy Education at the RSB Guide Dog Service would not exist without the vital ongoing support of more than 150 RSB Volunteer Puppy Educators, Bed and Breakfast Boarders, Emergency Boarders and Brood Bitch Holders and we thank them for their continued efforts and dedication in raising our pups to become RSB Guide Dogs.
63 – The number of pups in the RSB Guide Dog Service Puppy Education Program in 2013/14.

Outdoor Training and Environment Enrichment Area
Using world leading theories on dog development, in 2013/14 development of an outdoor Task Training Area and an Environment Enrichment Area commenced at the RSB Gilles Plains site.
Now in its final stages, the RSB would like to thank everyone who has donated to help make this structural dream a reality.

Congratulations Graduates!
The RSB Guide Dog Service is proud to announce the following RSB Guide Dog graduates for 2013/14 – congratulations to RSB Guide Dogs Abbie, Aiden, Beau, Beth, Eddie, Ella, Harry, Heidi, Henry, Koda, Quinlan and Yvette.
The RSB Guide Dog Service is proud to boast a new total of 55 RSB Guide Dog and client working teams in South Australia.

Thank you
The RSB Guide Dog Service would not be the world class service it is today without the dedication and commitment of volunteers, veterinarians and valued sponsors, including Royal Canin, PETstock, Novartis, IDEXX Pathology Services, Boehringer Ingelheim, Channel 9 Adelaide, FaB Cleaning Services and Accede Holdings.
The RSB would also like to extend a special thank you to our passionate and dedicated vets, including Dr Mark Reeve (Tea Tree Gully Veterinary Hospital). Dr Angus Brown (Stephen Terrace Veterinary Clinic), Dr Andrew Carter (Magill Veterinary Clinic), Dr Chris Girling (Noah’s Crossing Veterinary Clinic), Dr Roger Lavelle (Lavelle Diagnostic, Lancefield Victoria) and Dr Tony Read (Veterinary Ophthalmic Services, Plympton).

  • IDEXX Laboratories

  • Channel 9

  • petstock

  • FaB

  • Boehringer Ingelheim

  • Royal Canin

  • Sentinel Spectrum

  • Accede Holdings Pty Ltd

My RSB Guide Dog has brought inner happiness I never knew and I have fallen in love with this incredible animal. Every time I am with Ella I think of the two-and-a-half years that went into training and raising her and the difference she has made in my life.”

Rachael Leahcar, RSB Client & Ambassador

RSL Assistance Dogs Program
They are trained to be companions in times of trouble and to bring calm in times of stress. They can even be trained to open a refrigerator door, help load a washing machine, or turn on a light. They are assistance dogs.
In 2013/14 the RSB Guide Dog Service joined with the Returned & Service League of South Australia (RSL SA) to assist veterans who are dealing with issues associated with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) by working together to provide an assistance dogs program. To date, three assistance dogs have been placed with veterans, a great result for the first year of the program.

New coats for RSB Guide Dogs in training
Thanks to NAB, the RSB Guide Dogs are looking sharper than ever, with the RSB sponsor generously funding the stylish, new-and-improved coats for RSB Guide Dogs in training.
Boasting a fit-to-move design, the light breathable fabric can withstand a multitude of weather conditions and was chosen for optimal comfort.
If you or someone you know would like to follow in NAB’s footsteps and support the RSB Guide Dog Service in any capacity, please contact (08) 8417 5555 or email

RSB Industrial Services

Mark Burleigh, Manager, Industrial Services

Another busy and successful year at RSB Industrial Services stands as a credit to the workforce at the RSB Gilles Plains factory.
65 – The number of people who are blind or vision impaired who are provided with valuable and meaningful employment at RSB Industrial Services.
$1.3 million turnover – RSB Industrial Services has established a strong reputation for quality and efficient delivery of packaging and assembly solutions.
In 2013/14, RSB Industrial Services attracted many new customers, and retained business partnerships with major clients Electrolux, Philmac, Sarstedt and Toro.
A continuing member of Food SA, RSB Industrial Services is proud to support some of South Australia’s best producers, including SA Prawns, Tuckers, Goodies and Grains, Robern Menz, Kytons Bakery, Barossa Cheese Company, and Emmaline’s Country Kitchen.
In comparison with other Australian Disability Enterprises (ADEs), RSB Industrial Services stands strong as a one-stop shop for its clients, capable of assembling, fitting and finishing special job requirements.
RSB Industrial Services also retains the highest levels of accreditation with ISO 9001 Quality Assurance and HACCP (Hazardous Analysis Critical Control Points) Certification.
RSB Industrial Services continues to thrive in a difficult economic environment, which is a credit to both its loyal customers and the quality and value of what it has to offer, including:

  • Manual bag and box filling

  • Sorting

  • Collating and labelling

  • Shrink-wrap packaging

  • Heat sealing

  • Blister packaging

  • Die cutting

  • Sonic welding

  • Thermoforming (vacuum)

  • Pressure forming

Call RSB Industrial Services on (08) 8417 5600 or visit our website for more information.

I love coming to work – I can’t put it any other way. I just love the job satisfaction in the sense that I’m working, but also giving back to the RSB in a way for everything they’ve done for me over the years.”

Cuong Duong, RSB Industrial Services Employee

  • HACCP Certified

  • Australian Disability Enterprises

  • Quality Certified Company License Number Q0024

Print Alternative & Digital Library Services

Diana Swanson, Manager, Print Alternative & Digital Library Services

In 2013/14, more than 2,000 RSB clients accessed information in print alternative options including 18,500 pages of Braille and tactile diagrams, almost 990,000 large print pages, more than 6,000 pages of E-text issued on CD and 12,500 hours of audio requests.
10,927 – The total number of titles available through the RSB Digital Library Service. In 2013/14, the RSB welcomed 1,600 new titles for clients to enjoy.
798 – The number of clients who use the Digital Library Service on a regular basis.
The monthly production of large print crosswords continued with thanks to the volunteer services of the East Torrens Lions Club. In 2013/14 more than 1,650 copies of large print crosswords were distributed nationally each month, free of charge to Australians who are blind

or vision impaired. Demand for this service continues to grow with requests from across Australia.

Accessible Information Service
The RSB’s Accessible Information Transcription Service is available to all RSB clients free of charge, as well as businesses, service providers, government departments, educational facilities, clubs, churches and community groups for a small fee. This valuable service enables people who are blind or vision impaired to access information in their communities.
With advanced technology and RSB’s highly skilled staff, nearly all print material can be transcribed into a format more suited to an individual’s requirements. In 2013/14, regular requests included newsletters, invitations, street maps, timetables, student texts and information, handbooks or instructions and more.
In 2013/14, 35 organisations across Australia accessed this service, including Electoral Commission of South Australia, Premier’s Department, Fox Creek Wines, City of Salisbury, City of Charles Sturt, Adelaide Legacy, Freemasons, University of Adelaide, University of South Australia, Social Security Appeals Tribunal, ECH Inc. Austraining International and Motivation Australia.
Enquiries are welcome for this important community service. Please call (08) 8417 5555, visit or

The Digital Library Navigator provided to me by the RSB has made such a difference to my life. The Navigator allows me to listen to an audio book and immerse myself in the story – it makes me feel less isolated, like life is worth living.”

Rhonda Baker, RSB Client

Marketing & Fundraising

Diana Swanson, Manager, Marketing & Fundraising

Celebrating 130 Years!
To celebrate the RSB’s 130th Anniversary, in June the Governor of South Australia and Patron of the RSB, His Excellency Rear Admiral the Honourable Kevin Scarce hosted a reception for the RSB and 100 RSB supporters, including clients, volunteers, friends and family.
In July, the City of Adelaide celebrated the RSB’s 130th Anniversary Year with a reception hosted by The Right Honourable The Lord Mayor of Adelaide Stephen Yarwood. The event was well attended, with more than 200 guests and 15 RSB Guide Dogs and pups in training there on the night.

For All to See
In 2013, local author and historian, Dr Tony Rogers, put pen to paper to support the Royal Society for the Blind for its 130th year.
Released in 2014, Dr Rogers’ book titled ‘For All to See’ features the life-stories of 13 RSB clients, including seven-time Paralympian and gold medallist, Kieran Modra and ‘The Voice’s’ Rachael Leahcar.
A long term supporter of the RSB, Dr Rogers volunteered his time to write the book, with all proceeds from the book sales going to the RSB in its 130th Anniversary Year.
With an RRP of $30, ‘For All to See’ is available to purchase now! Contact the RSB on (08) 8417 5555 or head to the RSB online shop at

New – Change for Charlie Month!
Since the inaugural Charlie’s Day launch in 2011, the event has become a great hit with supporters, who have assisted the RSB to raise in excess of $100,000 for the RSB Guide Dog Service.
For the first time, in 2013/14 Charlie’s Day was expanded to a month-long event titled Change for Charlie, encouraging donors, supporters and sponsors to fundraise throughout the month of June.
Supported by Nova 919’s Lewis and Lowe, and Jarrod Walsh (pictured left), as well as major sponsors Foodland, Wallis Cinemas, PetStock, Chemist King, NAB and Channel Nine, the fundraising month was a huge success, and we thank all Change for Charlie supporters for helping the RSB to raise in excess of $30,000 for the RSB Guide Dogs.

How can I be a part of this community work?
With just 45 per cent government funding, the RSB relies heavily on the generosity of RSB donors, supporters and followers to assist us to continue to provide free client services.
To help the RSB assist people who are blind or vision impaired, you can:

  • Attend RSB events or hold your own

  • Volunteer

  • Sponsor an RSB Guide Dog pup or an event

  • Become an RSB Ambassador at your school or workplace

  • Donate

  • Become a regular giver

  • Buy an RSB lottery ticket

  • Leave a Bequest

  • Like us on Facebook or share the RSB Facebook page

  • Display an RSB coin collection unit at your organisation or workplace

Like to know more? Please call RSB Marketing and Fundraising on (08) 8417 5555, visit or or donate by calling 1800 644 577.

RSB Ambassador Team
Seamus Evans

Totally Wild, Network Ten

“I find it incredibly fascinating that man’s best friend is capable of being replacement eyes for its owner. The journey that both the RSB Guide Dogs and their owners who are blind or vision impaired walk down is out of this world! Being an RSB Ambassador is a great opportunity to raise awareness for this beautiful partnership.”

Erin Bell

Adelaide Thunderbirds and Australian Netball Diamonds

“I became an RSB Ambassador due to my own personal experience with vision impairment. I have worn glasses/contact lenses since I was 10 years old and would not have been able to pursue my sporting dreams without vision correction.”

Jane Reilly

FIVEaa Breakfast Radio Host

“Assistance from the RSB makes a huge difference to the lives of so many. Imagine how lonely and sad it must be to be born blind or vision impaired or to acquire vision loss. The RSB is there to support clients and their families during difficult times and to give them a brighter future.”

Rachael Leahcar

RSB Client and The Voice Australia Finalist

“I was born with Retinitis Pigmentosa and one day I will be totally blind. This would be scary if not for the Royal Society for the Blind. As an ambassador for them, I hope I can do everything in my power to help others like myself live their lives to the fullest, like the RSB has helped me to do.”

Adam Gibson

Adelaide 36ers, Team Captain

“I am very excited to be an RSB Ambassador this year, as it will give me the opportunity to support and raise awareness for people who are blind or vision impaired through the many programs and events that the RSB organise.”

Special Thanks

The RSB receives generous support from many caring individuals, organisations, Trusts and Foundations.
To all our donors and supporters, the RSB appreciates your generosity and acknowledges that without your support we could not achieve the level of service and support provided to our clients – more than 12,000 Australians who are blind or vision impaired.
A special thank you is sincerely expressed to the following:
Foundations and Organisations

  • Aboriginal Health Council of South Australia (AHCSA)

  • Accede Holdings

  • Adelaide Eye & Laser Centre

  • Adelaide Football Club (AFC)

  • Australian Hotels Association – Hotel Care Community Project

  • Australian Red Cross

  • Bank SA & Staff Charitable Fund

  • Barossa Fine Foods

  • BDO

  • Brighter

  • Boehringer Ingelheim

  • Channel 9 Adelaide

  • Charlesworth Nuts

  • Chemist King

  • City of Onkaparinga

  • City of Victor Harbor

  • City Soul – Experience Cafe

  • CMI Toyota

  • CMV Foundation

  • CMV Group

  • Commonwealth Bank Staff Community Fund

  • Community Benefit SA

  • Comunet

  • Cottage Singers

  • Cupcake Treats

  • Electrolux

  • Entertainment Publications of Australia Pty Ltd.

  • Escape Travel

  • FaB Cleaning Services

  • Fay Fuller Foundation

  • FIVEaa

  • Foodland

  • Francis Maurice Design

  • Freemasons Foundation

  • Hancock Foundation (The)

  • Holden Racing Team

  • Honda Foundation

  • IDEXX Laboratories

  • in-business magazine

  • JB Hi-Fi

  • JMJ Printing

  • Kiwanis Club of Glenelg

  • Kwik Kopy Norwood

  • Lightly Salted Photography

  • Lin Huddleston Charitable Foundation

  • Lions Club of Barossa Valley

  • Lions Club of East Torrens

  • Lions Club of Gilles Plains

  • Lions Club of Mount Barker

  • Lions Club of Victor Harbor

  • Lion Nathan

  • Maggie Beer

  • Marian & E H Flack Trust

  • Maxwell Cooper Family Trust

  • McClusky & Co Public Relations

  • Middleton Tavern Sports & Social Club

  • MiTac Australia

  • Mitcham Girls High School

  • Morgans Financial Limited

  • Morialta Trust

  • Mount Gambier & Districts Club for the Visually Impaired

  • Multicultural SA

  • NAB (National Australia Bank)

  • Norwood Screen Printers

  • Nova 919

  • Novartis

  • Office for Volunteers

  • Optometrist Association of SA (The)

  • Pack'n'Label Solutions

  • Palmdale Village

  • PETstock

  • Philmac

  • Port Adelaide Enfield Council

  • Pulteney Grammar School

  • Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists SA (RANZCO SA)

  • Royal Commonwealth Society

  • Rendezvous Hospitality Group

  • Rex Airlines

  • Rob’s Roasts

  • Robern Menz

  • Rotary Club of Campbelltown

  • Rotary Club of Encounter Bay

  • Rotary Club of Kidman Park

  • Royal Canin

  • RSB Student Ambassadors

  • SAFM

  • Sarstedt

  • Schild Estate

  • Seymour College

  • SGIC

  • Sight For All

  • Smithfield RSB Knitting Group

  • St Andrew School

  • St Lucia Festa

  • Stand Like Stone Foundation

  • Toop & Toop

  • Toro

  • Universal Charitable Fund

  • Wallis Cinemas

  • Wright St. Hotel


  • The Family of Gwenda Martin, OAM

  • Mr W Appelby

  • Miss M Baker

  • Mr LJ Balchin

  • Mr J Bates

  • Mr B Bateson

  • Mr B Beaumont

  • Mr TCA Binks

  • Mrs BR Bishop

  • Mr G Bishop

  • Mrs M Blythman

  • Mrs P Boots

  • Mrs M Buxton

  • Mrs M Carthew

  • Mr BC Clarke

  • Mr B Cooper

  • Mr & Mrs A & J Corstan

  • Mr & Mrs G & MA Dimmitt

  • Mr J Dodson

  • Mr CJ Domaille

  • Miss B Edson

  • Mrs M Eldridge

  • Ms H Farrow

  • Mr D Fiegert

  • Mrs K Floreani

  • Mr & Mrs I & C Fraser

  • Mr MG Fraser

  • Mr B Gillard

  • Mrs M Goodyear

  • Mr JL Gough

  • Mrs M Gramp

  • Mr GG Grivell

  • Mrs I Gugger

  • Mr K Gutte

  • Mr GA Hackett-Jones

  • Mr RM Hawkes

  • Mr & Mrs RW Hazell

  • Mr S Hugo

  • Mr G Husy

  • Mr & Mrs J & V Irish

  • Mr G James

  • Miss S Jones

  • Mr R Kemp

  • Mr P Klaschen von Averhoff

  • Mr C Kraehe

  • Mr H Kramer

  • Miss WM Laffer

  • Mrs EC Le Messurier

  • Mr SJ Leschke

  • Miss B Lomman

  • Mr GR Lyons

  • Mr R Marin

  • Mr B Mayo, AM, FCPA

  • Mr & Mrs N & R McPherson

  • Mrs I Medianik

  • Ms H Messner

  • Mr PV Miller

  • Miss JC Miller

  • Mrs R Miller & Family

  • Mr C Mitchell

  • Mrs A Ogier

  • Mr & Mrs G & E Palmer

  • Mrs BJ Pelton

  • Mr M Reece

  • Mr C Richardson

  • Mr EB Roberts

  • Mr I Robertson

  • Mr RT Sexton

  • Mr A Shadgett

  • Ms EE Spearen

  • Mrs H Sutcliffe

  • Miss C Tattershall

  • Mrs D Tilby

  • Miss PH Trott

  • Miss HE Tucker

  • Mrs CE Van Hattum

  • Mr W Wenig

  • Ms J White

  • Ms F Winson

  • Mr TC Wollaston

  • Mrs O Yeatman

We would also like to thank the media for their ongoing support of the RSB, namely: FIVEaa, Nova 919, SAFM, Fresh FM, ABC, Channel 9, Channel 7, Network Ten, in-business magazine, SA Life magazine, The Advertiser and the Sunday Mail, Messenger Community News and InDaily.

Special mentions go to McClusky & Co for their professional public relations assistance and to South Australian regional radio stations and newspapers for their continued coverage of the My Eye Health Program.
The RSB would also like to acknowledge the many South Australian service clubs who offered their financial and volunteering support throughout the year.

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