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Caring for her husband George*, who lives with dementia and mental health issues, Lorraine Harris* was initially wary of seeking help.

 

“I thought strangers wouldn’t understand,” she explained. “I had my reservations.” But Lorraine’s uncertainty was put to rest with a visit from Information & Advice service manager, Jana. “Jana put me at ease, she was absolutely marvellous.”

Struggling with health issues of her own, Lorraine needed to apply for Disability Living Allowance for both herself and George. This can be a lengthy and overwhelming process for just one application, let alone two, but our Information & Advice team were able to help. “Without Age UK Hertfordshire, I would never have filled out a form,” says Lorraine. The Harrises expressed how grateful they were for the practical support Jana and her team provided, but it was the personal support that meant the most to them. “Coping with mental illness or physical illness, it’s a very lonely place to be,” Lorraine explained. “And Jana was ever so nice.”

When George was diagnosed with prostate cancer, Lorraine was at a low point. Our Information & Advice team were able to refer her to InTouch, a telephone support team who can provide a listening ear to local older people in times of crisis. It was here that Lorraine was introduced to Jane, and though Jane couldn’t solve all of her problems, Lorraine found that just talking was helpful. “When I was absolutely screaming inside, there was a calm voice who understood.”

“I would like to extend my very sincere thanks to Jana and Jane,” says Lorraine. “Those two people have been so vital to me these past few months.”

*Names have been changed to protect privacy

Information & Advice

Click here for more about the support available from our Information & Advice team.

InTouch

Click here for more about the support available through our InTouch service.