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Sandy in her local town

Sandy is 73 and lives alone. She has poor physical health due to COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) and Osteoarthritis which affects her mental health and well-being. She has two daughters, but they don’t live nearby and Sandy doesn’t like to worry them, so has not told them how poorly she has been feeling and how much her health is affecting her day to day life.

Sandy has a low income so it’s hard for her to keep up with repairs to her home. She is also socially isolated and feels lonely, saying she doesn’t have friends that she feels she can talk to about her worries, and that she doesn’t want to be a burden to people.

She came to our Information and Advice service for a benefits check. She was in receipt of the lower rate care component of disability living allowance, which she had been receiving for many years, but she was not aware that because her health had deteriorated that she was able to apply for a supersession to her DLA (Disability Living Allowance) for her increased care needs.

Sandy has also started to open up to her daughters about her situation and so they are now able to offer her support. They say they wish they had known sooner so that they could have helped her.

We asked Sandy for feedback on her experience of our information and advice service and she said that Age UK Hertfordshire have ‘made a profound difference to my wellbeing. I was treated with empathy, never judged and always felt respected. I felt listened to and I felt valued for the first time and that I was important.’