South and West Devon Community Enabling Team – Debbie’s Story

This was one of many good news stories that I could have told however, this stuck out  in my mind as this lady was in danger of  becoming depressed  and her quality of life was in decline as she no longer had the confidence to go out of the home alone.

This lady had been referred to the Community Enabling Team as she had recently been bereaved and was becoming isolated in the home. She is an elderly lady who is visually impaired and has mobility problems. Initially she was very reluctant to go out but has always enjoyed reading, which she now finds very difficult. We started with a visit to the local library and introduced her to talking books and during our visit she met an old friend in the coffee shop.

In the following weeks we visited the library again as well as a garden centre and shopping. She said how much better she felt just getting out of the house and I was able to link her up with a local befriending service and her village community café which meets at the local hall.

We looked at different schemes to assist her with gardening and handy man services and we have contacted local companies in the approved “buy with confidence” scheme. She has agreed to meet with a councillor from Cruise bereavement services and has their help line number for times when she needs to talk. In a short time she has made real progress in improving her daily life.

She has not required any paid support and now has the confidence to continue with the activities that the Community Team introduced her to.

Following input from our service we supported her to have confidence to go out into the community and to make new contacts.  Also, giving her ideas of new things ie the speaking books to give her an interest / new hobby in the home.

We did not do anything differently this time but then again every case is individual.  We deal with such a variety of cases in Community Enabling – some very complex ie financial issues, housing , employment .

This case was quite simple to us but made a big difference to her!

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