How you can join a dedicated team and help to make people happier

The Patersons at home in Warkworth with their carer.
The Patersons at home in Warkworth with their carer.

More home carers are needed to cover the vast area of north Northumberland. The Gazette continues its campaign to help Age UK Northumberland’s recruitment drive.

Married life together has continued for one couple living in the north of the county thanks to Age UK Northumberland’s services.

Age UK Northumberland has been contracted to look after Mrs Isabella Paterson since last July and in that time has made a huge difference to her life and that of her husband, Douglas.

Married for 70 years, the couple met during the war in Radcliffe, Amble, where Mrs Paterson lived.

Mr Paterson soon proposed and they moved to his home in Scotland.

Moving back to Amble a short time later they spent a lot of their married days and brought up four children there, until the couple most recently settled in Warkworth in the 1980s.

The care provided by the home care attendants has allowed the couple, who are 90 and 95 respectively, to stay together in their home of the last 30 years.

Following a fall last February, Mrs Paterson sadly suffered a brain hemorrhage, which has affected her physical well-being as well as her mobility.

On Mrs Paterson’s return to home after the accident, the family were determined to keep their parents together.

Between them and the Age UK home attendants, every need is catered to for the couple.

The couple’s family said: “Prior to mum’s accident they were managing fine for a couple their age.

“However, with dad’s glaucoma, his sight is failing fast and mum needs special care, so we were worried they wouldn’t be able to manage.

“It’s all working out well right now though – between our family, and the Age UK Northumberland ladies their every need is seen to.

“Age UK do much of the medicinal duties, and call in four times a day to prepare meals and keep the house in order.

“Mum and Dad really look forward to them coming.

We do their shopping and jobs, and keep the household bills up to date, as well as spending a lot of time with them enjoying their company.”

At first, the family were aware that their parents were a little uncomfortable with strangers coming into their home.

The care is split between four regular carers, but the couple mainly see Hazel Stevens through the week and Jean Baird at weekends.

Mr and Mrs Paterson have quickly come to look upon these two ladies as their friends, and now enjoy the input they have in their lives.

The family concluded: “Mum and dad have always been together – they even worked together throughout their careers.

“Dad was a self-employed plasterer and Mum did all his paperwork.

“We are delighted this service is allowing them to stay together in their own home.”

Age UK Northumberland is looking to recruit more people like Hazel and Jean to make a difference to the lives of older people in the community.

If you think you have the skills, and the desire to help, as well as access to transport, then get in touch.

Further information on becoming a home care attendant and an application form are available by calling 0845 1400088.

Michelle Wren, head of corporate services at Age UK Northumberland:

“The response to our campaign within the Northumberland Gazette has been heartwarming.

“Now on week four, we have a number of inquiries already and are delighted with the outcome.

“We need so many people, we need to keep spreading the word.

“The more home care attendants we have, the more people we can help stay in their own homes.

“We’ve spoken before about the skills and personality needed for this calling, and about how important quality of care is to Age UK Northumberland.

“It seems that resonates with many of you out there and we are very lucky as a county to have such a warm and giving community.”