At CNCA we have the only complex befriending service in Croydon, providing befriending to frail, elderly, housebound people with complex needs and often a dementia diagnosis.  We support those very vulnerable clients to stay safe in their own homes.

Case Studies:

 

 

G, a lady in her early 80s, lived alone in a first floor flat.  She had two estranged sons and carers in 3 times a day to prepare her meals, do her shopping, cleaning and personal care.  She had very limited mobility and suffered  a lot of pain due to a prolapsed bowel and spinal fracture.  G was very lonely, and was glad to have a regular visit from someone who was not involved with her care.  We kept in contact with one of G's sons, so that he was aware of the difficulties she was facing. Sadly, she suffered a stroke and was in a coma at St Georges.  She made a brief recovery and we were able to visit her at CUH, where we had a lovely chat.  Unfortunately she deteriorated soon afterwards and passed away with both her sons at her bedside.  We were glad to share  some fun and friendship while G was going through such a difficult time.

 

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F is a young-at-heart lady in her early 80s who suffered a stroke in 2019.  She could no longer drive her car, as she suffered from dizziness, confusion and balance problems.  F is a fighter and she managed to find practical ways of coping, such as batch-cooking, so she could eat healthy food every day.  She is very house-proud and keeps her home in a good state, even though she feels wiped out afterwards.  F found it very hard to come to terms with the loss of her confidence and independence, and she found it even hard to accept help.  Over several weeks, we visited her and reassured her that there are other ways to be independent, using technology, and engaging more with local organisations.  F is now skyping her relatives and receiving regular calls from the Selsdon Contact Centre.  She is aiming to walk to the Centre once the Covid-19 situation is over, and get to know more people in her local area.

 

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J is a lady aged 70 who has Parkinsons.  This condition has severely affected her independence. She has two sisters who are very caring but have other caring roles.  J is very creative and was a film direct during her career.  Unfortunately she had become very isolated because of her illness.  We provided her with lots of information on local groups, and J started to attend these groups with the help of her sister.  Jstill enjoys regular phone chats now that the groups have shut down due to Covid-19, but she is in good spirits, know that there are people out there who care  about her.

 

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H is a lady who lives alone, with her only son in Florida.  She is trying to sell her large family home to move to a flat with on-site care, but unfortunately this has come to a halt because of the Covid-19 virus.  H struggles to walk because she has severe sciatica, and she is in constant, severe pain.  We were so concerned about her that we made urgent referrals to her GP and social services, as H had no help at all, and was also struggling with incontinence.  H received support from her GP who prescribed her morphine patches which has help to a certain extent.  An OT moved her bed downstairs with the help of neighbours, so that H no longer had to use the stairs and can now use the downstairs shower.  H how also gets help from the Continence Service who provide her with pads. H was encouraged to apply for higher benefits and to find a carer.  She engaged the help of a family friend who became her formal carer.  H is a lovely person who does not like to trouble anyone, so we sometimes encourage her to ask for help when she needs it.  H now feels supported, and we have regular chats, which she says is very reassuring and a point of contact for information and advice.

 

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M is a lady in her mid 80s who lives with bi-polar.  She is very pleasant and has a great sense of humour.  However she is now very isolated due to Covid-19, and she feels that regular calls help to maintain her mood and gives her something to look forward to.  Maria loves cooking and enjoys sharing her recipes.  She follows the news daily and enjoys cracking jokes about things going on in the world. 

 

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K is a gentleman in his mid 90s who  has regular calls from one of our volunteers.  K has lead a full life and has lots of memories of the war.  He is a very young-at-heart, lively person, and he enjoys the mental stimulation of a good chat.  Our volunteer has a cheeky sense of humour like K, and he loves it when our volunteer teases him, and they keep each other on their toes.  K looks forward to her calls and they they have developed a great rapport.

 

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D is a gentleman in his 80s who was a young man in the RAF.  He was posted to Egypt during the war and he still has some photos of him time there.  He loves his regular visits from our volunteer, and although his memory is fading, D remembers people who visit him, and always asks after the rest of us.  We have worked with his GP surgery to ensure that D is able to take his medication regularly, as he has been confused and thrown it way in the past.

 

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J is a lady aged 70 who lives with her adult son.  She has a history of cancer and depression and has always loved reading.  J is very isolated, and although her son lives with her they are very distant and do not always get along.  One of our befrienders visits J once a week and they are reading the same series of books so they have a lot to talk about when they meet.  Due to the Covid-19 lockdown visits have stopped, so J has regular telephone calls instead.  The lockdown has meant the son is at home full time and this has put an additional strain on their relationship.  A safeguarding referral was made when the son became physically abusive, and J has now had advice from the safeguarding team.  Meanwhile, our befriender has kept in regular contact with J and her son, and ensured that J does not feel alone, and the son knows there are other people in J's life to support her.  Things have improved, and things are now calmer at home.

 

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M is a lady in her 80s who is bed-bound due to medical conditions.  She is quite isolated although she has some good friends who she speaks with by phone regularly.  She loves a chat and has lots of good memories of Mario Lanza, who she met as a young woman.  We are currently supporting Molly through bereavement, as her nearest relative has passed away and she was not able to attend his funeral.  

 

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M is a lady who lives alone in a large house in Purley.  She has no close relatives but has some good friends and neighbours.  During the Covid-19 crisis her neighbours were not able to help her with her shopping as in the past, so we made a referral to CVA, who make regular shopping trips for her, with the help of volunteers, who drop off her shopping after she pays for it by phone.  M is looking forward to the lockdown coming to an end  so that we can begin home visits.