As our centres begin to re-open for respite stays and our time supporting NHS patients comes to an end, we wanted to share some of the stories of NHS guests who have stayed with us over the last few months. Hearing how much a stay at Revitalise means to our guests is what keeps us going, and we hope it will inspire more of you to book a much-deserved break too.
We can all agree that it’s been a difficult time, but here at Revitalise we’ve found that in the face of adversity you can always find stories that make you smile, and these are just that. We hope you find them as inspiring as we do!
Patricia was one of the many patients welcomed by Revitalise from the NHS, after she was discharged from hospital but unable to go home due to her reliance on constant care. Patricia has dementia and is also registered blind and with very limited mobility. Her daughter, Kay, told us that she had started to notice a marked decline in her Mum’s mental health and said, “Mum looked like she was on a downward spiral, but she has been completely changed by her time at [Revitalise]”.
Kay said of her Mum Patricia, “Being at Revitalise has been excellent, not only has it helped with her actual health but her mental health has really improved, she was on a lot of anti-depression and anxiety tablets.”
For Kay, the difference at Revitalise is being surrounded by friendly faces: “It’s the interactions that have made the difference”.
After suffering a freak accident last year which left him paralysed from the waist down, Alan has been in Salisbury hospital awaiting surgery. When Covid-19 hit, he was forced to leave the hospital, but unable to go home – which is where Revitalise stepped in.
Following several weeks at Revitalise Netley Waterside House, Alan spoke to us and said, “I’ve got a lot more people looking after me than at hospital, because I was stuck in a ward there but (here) I’ve got a lot more room to move around.” He told us how much he has enjoyed being able to get outside in his wheelchair and stay fit and social with other guests. He has also been fulfilling a lifelong ambition by learning to play the guitar with one of our centre staff members, Paul, as his instructor.
Alan says he was worried about having to go into a care home, because of the risk of catching Coronavirus, and sums up how grateful he is to be at Revitalise by saying, “I am pinching myself everyday thinking how lucky I am”.
We spoke to Lilian Whithead, who told us her Mum’s story. Lilian told us her Mum had always been an active and well-respected member of the local community, but later in life she developed dementia and had recently moved to a care home nearby. Joyce has overcome a multitude of challenges in life; she had a stroke, a blood clot in her lungs, and just before lockdown was rushed into hospital with an infection. When she was ready to leave, she could not return to her care home – and so Revitalise welcomed her in.
Joyce’s daughter Lilian said frankly, “Thank God we got her to Revitalise, otherwise she wouldn’t have made it. They nursed her through, gave her 24-hour care, and really looked after her. If she hadn’t gone to Revitalise she would have lost her life. We know that.”
It wasn’t a one-way relationship though, our Jubilee Lodge colleagues told us that they grew particularly close to Joyce and loved having her with them during lockdown. As well as caring for her they helped Joyce stay in contact with her daughters via video call.
If you’re feeling inspired after reading these stories and have your own to share, use our online form to do just that!