Monthly archives for March, 2016
The Last WeekPosted on 11th March 2016 by Sean de Podesta
Last Friday, I was covering the telephone in the office and took several interesting calls. First, one from Gerry.
He had been to see Matthew, a 73-year-old man with a learning disability, who had been admitted to hospital earlier in the week because he had been feeling suicidal. Gerry had been helping Matthew into new sheltered accommodation only the week before. Matthew has also been suffering badly with his legs and is losing his mobility. Over the last few months, Gerry has been seeing Matthew two or three times a week, liaising with social services and his housing provider on Matthew’s behalf.
Who Cares?Posted on 10th March 2016 by Sean de Podesta
2016 began in a way that really emphasised to me the problem of social isolation that the Neighbourhood Care Scheme seeks to address. Just as I was preparing to leave the office at the end of my second day back at work after the Christmas break, we had a phone call from Jim, one of our volunteers. He had just been to see Michael, the 80-year-old man who he visited through the scheme. He had got no answer from the doorbell and Michael’s phone was engaged. In the office, we contacted the hospital to see whether Michael had been admitted (he hadn’t) and then Michael’s landlords (a housing association), who suggested that we call the police. We did this, and were assured that they would call round to Michael’s flat to check that he was okay. Two days later we had a call from the Coroner’s office to say that Michael had been found dead in his flat. We don’t know how long his death had gone unnoticed.