Client given ‘new lease of life’ after request from Westmorland Homecare
David, 82, who lives in Garstang, was devastated when Janice, his wife of 36 years, died nine months ago. For many years they had both enjoyed a love of crafts and cardmaking but after Janice passed away David did not feel able to continue with the hobby.
But then Robbie Aston, who works for Westmorland Homecare at its Poulton, Fylde and Wyre branch, which helps look after David, asked him if he would consider making the cards the company will send out to all its clients in the area this Christmas.
“I was delighted to be asked,” said David. “I had been locked in a shell for nine months but this was an awakening for me. I went into my little craft room and thought can I do this? Then I thought ‘yes you can’.
“Since I have been busy making cards for Westmorland Homecare I have been so much happier and it has given me a new lease of life. For the first time in nine months at the weekend, I went to the craft shop In Fleetwood to buy some bits and pieces.”
Jade Street, Care Coordinator - Recruitment and Community Engagement with Westmorland Homecare, said: “We love getting our clients involved as much as we can and we knew he would be the perfect man for the job. The cards are absolutely beautiful and unique and will certainly spread some Christmas cheer.
“It is all about us going the extra mile. We don’t just care for our clients - we try to ensure that their lives are enriched and they are doing what makes them happy.”
David receives regular homecare from a private carer, Michelle Cross, and from Westmorland Homecare. He was full of praise for both and said of Westmorland Homecare: “Their staff are absolutely wonderful. They are all cheerful and they genuinely care about me.”
David, who grew up in North London and Bournemouth, was called up for National Service in the late 1950s and decided to stay on. He served in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME), which was attached to the Army Air Corps and looked after Sioux and Scout helicopters and fixed wing craft such as the Beaver and Auster.
After leaving REME in 1968, he became a lorry driver in Scotland. “Janice and I visited Blackpool for a weekend, liked it and never left!” said David “We rented a house in the area. Later we lived at Great Eccleston and retired before we moved to Garstang 22 years ago.”
The interest in card making began after Janice had a stroke about 12 years ago. “I bought her a £20 craft set and we found that we both loved it and started making cards,” said David. “She was an absolute wizard at it and had loads of ideas and I picked up a lot from her.”
Jade said that staff at Westmorland Homecare planned to treat David to a meal at his favourite steakhouse as a thank you for making the cards.
Westmorland Homecare provides hundreds of hours of care each week to enable elderly and often frail people to live independently in their own home.
Its services include home care, such as help with housekeeping and meal preparation, and personal care, such as help with dressing, bathing and getting in and out of bed.