Customer stories

Carers play an essential role in helping vulnerable people to go about their daily lives; we talk to live-in carer Matt Spragg and stroke survivor Ian Chapman

Customer Case Study - Ian Chapman and Matt Spragg

I am immediately welcomed into Ian’s home by his carer, Matt, a Bluebird Care live in carer, who ushers me in and introduces me to Ian. Ian, who is in his late seventies, suffered from a stroke three years ago; Matt has been caring for him since March 2018.

Ian says: “We have been friends since he arrived. I am relaxed having Matt here. If I get into problems, I call Matt and he helps me. He helps me live my life.”

Matt cleans the house, cooks meals, makes drinks, and helps Ian with personal care. He also keeps track of Ian’s medication and takes him to doctor’s appointments.

Ian explains: “It takes the hard work away from you and it really helps. It is a relief for my family knowing Matt is here looking after me.”

Ian had a career in finance in the City of London before retiring in 1989 and moving to Devon in 1993. He bought an old farm and had a small holding near Collumpton where he used to run around the country lanes training for marathons. About three years ago, Ian moved to Exeter to be nearer to the shops.

Ian: “I would be in a nursing home if I didn’t have live in care and I like my home and staying here.” He pauses, before poignantly adding: “I am in rehab. I am learning to stand again. I want to be able to walk to the shops and go down to Double Locks and walk along the canal. I want to shave, and to write again.”

Matt lives with Ian and cares for him for two weeks in a row and then has one week off. On Matt’s week off, another carer comes to look after Ian.

Matt, who resides in Bridgwater when he isn’t caring for Ian, has been in the care profession since 1992. Matt has worked with youth, in psychiatrics, with disabled young people and adults, and with the elderly.

Also a former nursing home employee, Matt first came across the concept of live in care when his friend’s grandmother was not very well. He recalls: “I thought that the lady who was with her, was her friend and then I saw her handing her some medication and I realised, she was her carer.”

He continues: “Ian is the first person I have been a live in carer with. I was so nervous about starting live in care, especially being on my own with the client, but I have drawn on my experience and it has been fine. I really like the one to one approach – it’s really consistent and you can give really good quality care.”  

Matt keeps Ian’s family up-to-date with Ian’s care and wellbeing, as well as looking after Ian’s daily needs. 

Matt says: “It can be really challenging and really exhausting sometimes, but I feel like I have been really lucky with Bluebird Care – they are very supportive of their staff. They encourage and offer gentle guidance.”

He continues: “An important part of my role is about empowering Ian to make his own choices. It is about enabling Ian to work with what he has got – and he has got a lot of grit in him.”

Bluebird Care services

Our dedicated team of friendly, homecare professionals can: 

  • Assist with a ‘good morning’ start to the day, helping you to get up, wash, shower or bathe, dress and have breakfast
  • Remind or assist you to take your medicines and collect or return medication from your pharmacy or dispensing GP surgery
  • Prepare meals with or for you and assist you at mealtimes
  • Collect your pension for you or with you
  • Shop with you or help you to make a shopping list, go to the shops, come back and put it all away
  • Help with your laundry or ironing and keeping your home clean and tidy
  • Support you with social activities such as going out for a walk, attending a day centre, visiting friends or family, going to your church or club etc
  • Give a little pampering when you need it – the occasional visit to organise bathing, clean clothes, fresh bedding and a thoughtfully prepared meal before bedtime
  • At the end of each day, some help with getting ready for bed
  • Overnight ‘sleeper’ or waking support, respite care or a 24 hour live in service
  • Some of our offices can also offer homecare and support to children and their families either on a regular basis or for short term respite care


To talk to us about arranging care for yourself, a loved one or friend in Exeter please call 01822 678111‚Äč