26 Jan 2015
Why live-in care is a great alternative to a care home
Live-in care offers many advantages over residential care homes.
“I trust him like one of my own sons,” says 79-year-old Robin Way, who is looked after by Trinity hourly care worker, John Mackay.
John has just won Trinity’s most trusted carer of the year award and it’s easy to see why. Working with Trinity for the past 18 months and as a carer for the past 8 years, John has dedicated himself to working in care along side a full time job in the Civil Service.
“I love my care work. It’s so different from what I do the rest of the week. For me it’s relaxing, fulfilling work.”
John has three hourly clients that he pops in to look after mornings and evenings, before and after work and he takes great joy from the strong relationships he has made with those clients.
“Life is about building strong, trusting relationships and I believe it’s those relationships that define you, “ he says, “so giving something back to society is important for me.”
John was introduced to the world of stay-at-home care very early on in his life – his mum had a stroke when he was just seven years old, dying three years later and his dad had a heart attack, dying when John was just 13. He then went to live with his grandparents, who lived well into their 90’s, so caring for others at home has always been a huge part of his life.
This first hand experience has meant he is passionate about supporting people to remain in their own home, especially as they get older. “People treasure the past,” he says, “and being surrounded by memories as you age, means you can still have a connection to the life you have had and that’s important.”
“From a young age, I was caring for family members and was constantly around other carers. I saw how much of a difference you could make to people’s lives,” he says.
The situation at home also meant that John had to grow up very quickly and as he put it “become socially minded.” He has always been drawn to working in the caring professions and has worked on the suicide phone-lines with The Samaritans and also supporting adults with learning difficulties to live independently.
He’s also been on the other end of needing care, as at just 19 years old, he very nearly died of kidney failure. After a transplant in 1989, “I have had 27 years of life and would have died without it. Being on both sides of the fence has made me appreciate life and want to give back.” As a carer for Trinity, that’s what he does best, adding,
“It’s the clients who make this job easy – they are genuinely lovely people, – a real privilege to look after.”