• crop4
    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
  • crop1
    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
  • crop2
    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
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    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
  • crop3
    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town
  • crop5
    no-one should be lonely in our friendly town

Wow, we didn't know that!

Wow, we didn't know that!

What do you get if you sit 6 older people in a room and ask them 'Would you rather wrestle a lion or a shark?'  Well, once the laughter has died down and the means of escape established, what you have is the start of the first ever Hope Trust focus group session.  

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What's in a Name?

What's in a name?

We had to wait a few days to hear the name of the new royal baby; no doubt there was much discussion about how appropriate any name the young couple chose, would be.  We took a few weeks ourselves to name our daughter as we had dropped the original name we had been considering, only to find we hadn't thought of an alternative!

In Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet, Juliet says 'What's in a name?  That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.' In other words, a rose smells sweet whether it is called 'Rose' or 'Doris!"  Yet names do matter.

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Hospitals - strange, alien places aren't they? I usually go to them when I visit people who have to stay there for treatment.  If you, like me, visit hospitals, does your visit go like this:

Struggle to find somewhere to park, hope I have the right change for the car park machine, walk past people enjoying the sunshine who are attached to drips, or look very ill indeed, sitting in wheelchairs (some of whom are smoking,) get confused at the number of entrances and length of corridors, use the hand sanitisers (hoping I dont lick my fingers before washing the gel off!), visit, leave, all the while relieved that its not me in there.

Yet, during each hour of every day stories of life and death, joy and sorrow are taking place under that one enormous roof.  I admire the staff who work there, whilst happy I was not called to the same job as them, but answer me this - why is it that once in there, people seem to lose a bit of themsleves, seem to become part of something alien and unfamiliar?  And it doesn't just happen to patients; why is it that I don't always seem to know what's acceptable when it comes to helping people in there?  Why don't I know whether, or not, to respond to the elderly lady in the opposite bed who is asking for help to sit up?  Yet if I saw that lady in the street needing help to get through a shop doorway, I wouldn't hesitate, I'd be there, opening the door, chatting with her, doing whatever I could to help.

On reflection, it seems to me that, as I visit my client/friend in this alien environment, the best thing I can do is be myself.  I need to bring a reminder that there is a world outside of the walls of the ward, encourage her to want to return to it and when I see someone in need, I simply need to be brave and do what is right.

Read more: Hospitals

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