The RAF Benevolent Fund's Respite Centre, Princess Marina House, recently launched its new Respite at Home service to help veterans and carers in need of a break. In this blog, Shirley Steeples, Princess Marina House General Manager, tells us more about the new service.
The Care Quality Commission oversees health and social services care in the UK and its new report, "State of Care," finds that "the combination of a growing and ageing population, more people with long-term conditions, and a challenging economic climate means greater demand on services and more problems for people in accessing care." At Princess Marina House, we are expanding our services to help meet the growing need.
We know that isolation for the elderly and strain on carers is a real problem that can take a huge emotional toll. That is why Princess Marina House launched its popular Veterans Lunch Club where veterans in the surrounding area can drop in for a nice meal and good natter.
But we know there are many RAF veterans and partners in the surrounding community who are less mobile and unable to attend. Our new Respite at Home service provides them with the companionship of a qualified support assistant in the home and gives carers – often partners or adult children – peace of mind and a needed break.
A qualified support assistant comes to the veteran's home for up to five hours at a time and return visits can be arranged every eight weeks. The assistant will follow a personal care plan, developed in advance, and provide a friendly visit with activities, light snacks, and help with needs such as medication, mobility, and personal care.
We are already seeing a strong demand for the service which is currently available to RAF veterans, partners, widows, and widowers living within a 10 to 15-mile radius of Rustington. And while we are asking for a £5 contribution per hour, the service can be provided at a reduced rate or even free of charge in cases of financial hardship.
If you would like information on the Respite at Home service, please email RespiteAtHome@rafbf.org.uk. To book in for the Veterans Lunch Club or speak to someone regarding the Respite at Home service, please call 01903 784044.
The Veterans Lunch Club and Respite at Home services are supported with a grant from the Aged Veterans Fund.