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News items from June 2016

The importance of First Aid - Kim’s story

Kim Spencer attends our Carers Support Group in Lougborough and she came along to some First Aid sessions we'd arranged for the group, through St John's Ambulance

Just a couple of weeks later, Kim was called upon to put her First Aid skills into use, not once, but twice, as she explains: 

"I was walking my dog over Beacon Hill in Loughborough, on a bitterly cold and drizzly day. Suddenly, I heard a cry for help. I looked over at the rocks to my right and saw a lady lying there. I rushed over and realised she was lying awkwardly on her back with her head pointing downhill. She was conscious but obviously in pain. 

I decided to call for an ambulance. Two weeks before, I'd attended a First Aid session through Support for Carers and was told you can also dial '112' to get through to the emergency services, as well as '999' ('112' is the pan-European number for the Emergency Services across EU countries). I dialled '999' and was asked for our location, which was really difficult to explain as we were in a country park and even though I walk my dog there twice a week, I couldn't think of the names of the roads leading to the car parks. I could only think to tell the operator that the car park was opposite the Charnwood Forest Golf Club. Also, as there are numerous tracks that can be taken from the car park, I described my car to her and told her that it was facing the track I had taken. I also mentioned that there are two aluminium gates along the track that are normally locked, so they would need to get through them with the ambulance. 

In the meantime, I tried to help the lady.  She said she had fallen from the rocks and, as she was in an awkward position, I decided not to move her. Her hands were grazed a little and she was cold. I used my coat to wrap around her. It was the only thing I had to keep her warm. 

I asked her what her name was, but she couldn’t remember, and I was worried she may have a brain injury. She said she wanted to get up, so she could fetch her children from school, but I tried to keep her calm by talking to her. 

Her mobile phone rang and I asked if I could get it out of her handbag. It was her husband wondering where she was. I explained what had happened and he said he would come as soon as possible.

The operator stayed on the phone with me for 45 minutes until the ambulance finally arrived. They had trouble getting through the gates as I had predicted. Fortunately, there was a man who works from a hut in the woods, who had a key to the gates. 

I was so relieved to see the ambulance crew.  Soon after, her husband arrived too. As everything was then under control, I left the scene.

I rang her husband the following day to see how she was and he told me that a helicopter had air-lifted her to hospital.  Apparently, she had an object embedded in her side and had to have it surgically removed. I haven’t heard anything since.

A few weeks later, I was driving towards Woodgate, in Bedford Square, Loughborough, when I saw 2 old ladies crossing the road in front of me. They were taking a long time, so I decided to stop to let them cross. One of the ladies was pushing a shopping trolley frame; she tilted the trolley to get it up the kerb, but then suddenly toppled over onto the road.

I got out of my car to help.  I remembered what I had been taught at the First Aid session about the ‘DR ABC’ checks, so I quickly went through them.  As it happened, the lady had fallen almost in ‘the recovery position’, so there was no need to move her. She was conscious and breathing. I felt relieved at the situation so far, but then was horrified to see blood on the road which was coming from her head! By this time, a crowd started to appear and a passing taxi driver called for the ambulance. I was so grateful that other people were there to help me.

A girl came over from a nearby laundrette and a man appeared with a First Aid kit. We managed to put pressure on the wound, and then more ladies arrived with blankets from the laundrette to wrap around her to keep her warm. Then, fortunately, the lady’s son and daughter arrived. It turned out that the lady was 95 years old and lived in the nearby care home. I don’t know why she was out walking in town as she was wearing slippers; she had dementia and was also deaf. Her daughter said the head wound was probably an old wound that had opened up. Apparently, she had a history of falls.

A paramedic arrived shortly afterwards, followed by the ambulance, 30 minutes later, at which time I left the scene.

I have heard nothing about the incident since, so I don’t know what happened to her."

If you'd like to find out more about learning First Aid please call us on 0845 689 9510 (calls charged at local rates) or email [email protected]

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Do you care for someone with dementia?

The Alzheimer's Society is running The Carer Information and Support Programme at venues around Leicestershire, to give carers support and information on caring for someone with dementia.

The Programme includes a series of workshops run over four sessions - for people caring for a family member or friend with dementia. It will give you an oppotunity to talk about your experiences and the impact they're having on you, in a friendly and confidential environment.           

Topics will include: 

The workshops are run by Alzheimer's Society staff and volunteers. Please aim to attend all sessions if possible. If you're unable to attend the dates/times below, please register your interest as future groups may be available.  

Hinckley Course Dates  

All sessions will run from 1.30pm-4pm 

Session 1 - Tuesday 7th June
Session 2 - Tuesday 14th June
Session 3 - Tuesday 21st June
Session 4 - Tuesday 28th June 

Venue: The Pathways Centre, Hinckley Baptist Church, Baptist Walk, Hinckley, LE10 1PR. 

Lutterworth Course Dates 

All sessions will run from 1.30pm-4pm 

Session 1 - Monday 4th July 
Session 2 - Monday 11th July 
Session 3 - Monday 18th July
Session 4 - Monday 25th July 

Venue: The Wycliffe Medical Practice, Lutterworth Medical Centre (The Community Room), Gilmorton Road, Lutterworth, LE17 4EB. 

Leicester City Course Dates

All sessions will run from 6pm-8.30pm. 

Session 1 - Thursday 7th July 
Session 2 - Thursday 14th July
Session 3 - Thursday 21st July
Session 4 - Thursday 28th July

Venue: Moat Community College (Joseph Merrick Building), Maidstone Road, Leicester, LE2 0TU. 

Melton Course Dates 

All sessions will run from 10am-12.30pm

Tuesday 2nd August - Understanding Dementia
Tuesday 9th August - Legal and Money Matters
Tuesday 16th August - Providing Support and Care
Tuesday 23rd August - Carers: Coping Day to Day

Venue: Melton Borough Council, Egerton Room 1 & 2, Parkside, Station Approach, Burton Street, Melton Mowbray, LE13 1GH.                      

To find out more and book your place: 

Call: 0116 231 1111
Email: [email protected]

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Vista Mobile Support Service touring Leicestershire

Vista's Mobile Support Service is visiting Leicestershire throughout the summer - giving information, advice and support about eye health, preventing sight loss, visual impairment and Vista services. 

Click for full details

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Carer in Barwell?

Carer in Barwell? Help shape a new carers' support group meeting on the 2nd Tuesday of every month...

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‘Time Out for Carers’ Barwell Support Group - meeting 7th June

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Carers Health and Wellbeing Service praised by NHS health chiefs

Our Carers Health and Wellbeing Service has been highlighted in a new NHS report as a good example of an organisation working closely with GPs to provide backing for carers - the often unsung heroes. 

The service is backed by Leicestershire County Council, along with health partners, and involves wellbeing workers from Voluntary Action South Leicestershire (VASL) linking up with the GPs to offer advice and support to carers. 

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Visit the amazing city of Knittingham!

This is the amazing and unique city of Knittingham, in the East Midlands. Everything in the film was designed and hand-knitted by Linda Barks of Leicestershire and all of it without a pattern or guide.
Linda is a carer and knitting is her hobby and her way of taking care of herself.

Knittingham City project Copyright Linda Barks 2016. Knittingham City video Copyright Radcliff Gregory 2016.

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Support for Carers Leicestershire is funded by Leicestershire County Council. However, we rely on donations to enhance the services we provide for carers in the area. If you would like to support us please contact us.