Ann and Don would like to thank you.
This Christmas, East Lancashire Hospice would like to thank each and every person who supports them. Whether you regularly donate, shop in their charity shops, or attend their events, you make a difference.
Ann would also like to thank you. Ann is 76 and cares for her husband who has Parkinson’s full time. She recently chatted to East Lancashire Hospice about her husband, and the Hospice at Home Supportive Care Service.
“Donald was a Chartered Engineer for British Gas, then Technical Director in India. We have been lucky – we have lived and worked in India, Abudabi and throughout the UK.
Donald now sits quietly in his chair. Ann pats his hand and smiles at him “Do you like his socks?” - they are a wonderful luminescent green - “I always put brightly coloured socks on; he always wore such socks with his formal office wear as a secret sign of rebellion when he worked.”
Ann continues to smile at her husband, and gently pats his hand again. Donald’s Parkinson’s started ten years ago, but has deteriorated now that dementia has also set in.
“Fifteen months ago, Lancashire Council allocated me two hours support per week to go shopping.
“I am lucky, I now have someone who comes in every morning and evening to help me, but at weekends Lucy is not available.
“Don stopped walking in July, which means I can’t get him up in the morning, or get him to bed. The company who provides my respite care for two hours also provided additional support for Saturday and Sunday morning, but that left evenings.
“I didn’t know I could turn to East Lancashire Hospice. Like everyone else, I thought they only cared for the terminally ill. I didn’t know they could do anything for me. And we live in Langho - you don’t realise until you start to look that actually we could ask them for help.”
Hospice At Home now come out two nights at the weekend from around 8pm to 10pm. “I told them I didn’t need them that long, until they pointed out they weren’t there just for Donald, they were here for me too. And that was when I realised how lucky I was. They wanted to take care of my well-being, not just Don’s.”
We chat for a little longer. She looks again and smiles in memory at Don. She chats about their two sons; Mark lives nearby and he and with his wife and son drop by, supporting her care; her other son Philip comes up from South Manchester with his wife and young children to help when he can. But she is essentially on her own caring for Don.
“Without East Lancashire Hospice, I would not know who to turn to. I know they are there at the end of the telephone, and I can ask them for more support whenever I need it.
Without donors raising money, buying lottery tickets and raffle tickets, the hospice would not be here at all.
East Lancashire Hospice would like to thank all of our donors for their continued support. Thanks to you, Ann knows we are always there for her.