Family Support Group 22nd November 2018
Bluebird Care Ealing's 1st FSG, a support network for our customers and their loved ones in a friendly and relaxed space to share their experiences and get to know others in similar circumstances.
The FSG provides our customers and their loved ones with a friendly and relaxed space to share their experiences and get to know others in similar circumstances. It was our first group session, and there was six of us in total. Our Registered Manager Dean Morley was in attendance along with Louise Telot the Events and Marketing Manager. Mary Stanton one of our customers arrived at 7pm along with her ‘Live-in’ carer Patience Carpenter. Also Sue Geall whose father suffers from Alzheimer’s helped to host the evening and share her experiences of her father’s Alzheimer’s with the group. (Her father John Geall has been a customer of Bluebird care for 2 years). Margaret Lipka also attended whose father suffers from dementia and is currently evaluating her father’s current care and coming to this session provided an insight into the business, is now considering bluebird care as a possible option for providing care for her father in the future.
We had a lovely but emotional evening as tears and laughter was shared amongst Sue and Margaret. They both realised they had so many things in common with NHS issues, to the support they don’t have outside and the importance and relevance of these sessions. Such a mutual respect and connection was made that evening they even exchanged mobile numbers to continue supporting each other.
Mary loved the evening and I spoke about the activities I am setting up for 2019. One of the activities that generated a buzz of excitement for Mary and her carer was the reminiscence /memory café that is held each Thursday at St Barnabas church. Mary now attends this every Thursday and loves it. She has even asked for more activities which I am scheduling for the spring.
“Thank you so much for inviting me to the first meeting of the Family Networking Group. I found it so helpful to talk to other people who are either suffering from or supporting their loved ones with age related illness. The last 5 years that I have been caring for my Dad, who has Alzheimer’s , have been very hard , frustrating and distressing , but speaking to other people who deal with similar issues , and the ongoing support of the Blue Bird team (in particular-our fantastic primary carer Elaine ) I feel less isolated and part of a community of people with similar problems , which is a great help to me .This is a brilliant initiative Louise , thank you . Let me know when the next meeting is...I’ll be there “- Quote from Sue Geall