Eric Bolton

For most fans, watching their football team play every week is second nature. But for one Darwen resident, it's his local hospice who help to get him to Ewood Park each week.

Eric's wife Olive said: "Eric has been going to Blackburn Rovers games for 50 years. Because of his condition everything he does is slowly. He can feed himself and communicate but not as well as he used to. But the Hospice at Home healthcare assistants are so patient with him and take the time to talk to him about the things he used to enjoy. He was very active before he was diagnosed and as well as being a cricket coach for 19 years he was a keen walker and the garden was his pride and joy so the Hospice at Home team talk about those things with him. He gets a lot out of the time he spends with them. I know it sounds selfish but it gives me time to do something for myself. Caring can get challenging and its better if we both get chance to persue our individual interests. I might only meet a friend for a coffee or something as simple as pushing my grandaughter on the swings but its good for Eric and me to have a break from each other.

"Eric attends the hospice one day a week for Creative and Support Therapies. This gives him the chance to meet people and try new activities for himself as well as carrying on the things he can't do at home like gardening. Eric feels safe at the hospice, so I don't need to worry when he's there.

"His care routine, which includes having to take medication every 2 hours 45 minutes during the day can be tough. Eric’s night time routine also takes about 2 hours 45 minutes. We have a good, supportive family, but it's so good to have the hospice support. Things would be a huge struggle without the help they give us.

"People don't realise how much the hospice can help them. It tends to be associated with end of life care, but they have much more to offer people with life-limiting illnesses. I see what fantastic ways of caring they give so I’m in the best position to tell others. It’s really important that people are aware of this.”

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