Sheffield Wednesday visit Royal Society for the Blind this Christmas

Four Sheffield Wednesday players kicked off Christmas at Sheffield Royal Society for the Blind (SRSB) on Wednesday morning.

Marco Mathias, Felipe Melo, Vincent Sasso and Urby Emanuelson visited the Mappin Street centre and gave gifts to service users at the charity.

Roy, 77, who is blind in one eye, as a result of a stroke said: “It’s been one of the best days of my life. I’ve supported Wednesday for 70 years. I’ve never been as close to the players. Before today the closest I’d been was going into the dressing room when the players weren’t there.”

The players were given a tour of the centre, including the shop where the charity sells products to help visually impaied people maintain thei independence, including products made by the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB).

They also got the chance to wear special glasses which simulates the effect of certain eye conditions on eyesight.

Former Dutch international Urby Emanuelson said: “It’s really interesting. It’s amazing to meet people with problems with their sight, because we as players have never been in that situation where you can’t see or are having problems with your sight.

“It’s great to see how they support the team and try to be at every game, or watch every game. They know all the players. It’s a great experience.

“It’s a humbling experience, you have to be happy with the things you have to be grateful for the things in your life and make the best of it.”

The SRSB is a self-funded charity, and was founded in 1860. It helps over 300 people a week, and supports over 3,600 visually impaired people in Sheffield.