Janis Wilson joined Age NI's My Life My Way project as a volunteer in Larne and met Pearl.
My Life My Way is supported by the Big Lottery Fund's Reaching Out: Connecting Older People programme and provides support to older people with dementia and their carers in the Belfast and Northern Trust areas.
'I've made a great friend, a truly lovely lady. She recognises me as soon as I come through her door and she’ll say, 'Hello, it’s my wee friend Janis.' This makes my day.'
'I tell her everything that’s going on in my life, with my family, my work, even my dog. I know that my chit chat is just day-to-day things, but my voice is comforting and my face a familiar one. I’ll show her photos from family weddings. We share a joke and a laugh. I keep her spirits up. She just smiles. I love to see her smile.'
'Her family are wonderful. They know me well, and feel reassured that their mum’s in safe hands. We sometimes go into town and walk around the shops. Pearl loves clothes. She has a great sense of style and a keen eye for fashion.'
'We also go to tea dances, something that Pearl enjoyed when she was younger. Her daughter recently told me, 'Mum lived for tea dances'.
Mandy Wilson, My Life My Way Team Leader said, 'Janis is a very special volunteer who goes above and beyond her role with the My Life My Way project. She is so committed to supporting Pearl on her journey with dementia. They've developed a genuine friendship - it’s wonderful to see how they enrich each others lives.'
Read more about becoming a My Life My Way Volunteer
To volunteer, fill out the volunteer form, telephone 028 9024 5729 or email firstname.lastname@example.org