Speakeasy Lanarkshire Respite Break
A story by Speakeasy Lanarkshire
We provided 2 respite breaks for carers and their cared for who are laryngectomies (removal of the voice box) due to cancer and are a self help group for fellow laryngectomees, oral, facial, head and neck cancers living in North and South Lanarkshire.
What Speakeasy Lanarkshire Respite Break did
We sourced funding for 2 years for a part time Information and Support Worker
We have recruited volunteers who have taken part in HIIC training (Health Care in the Community)
We sent letters to all members who then met and chose (by majority) where and when they wished to go. All members and their carers who wished to go were accommodated. We then included the number of volunteers required.
The first break was to the Mountains of Mourne and the Titanic Experience in May 2014 and the second break was to Llandudno in October 2014. The breaks were for 5 days/4 nights including transport and meals.
Carers and cared for enjoyed a number of organised trips with volunteers on hand to assist giving the carers and cared for a break from each other.
Carers and cared for went shopping, sightseeing and generally enjoyed a break from their caring role.
Carers and cared for enjoyed the entertainment provided by the hotel and relaxed in the happy atmosphere. They joined in and had conversations with other guests, some of whom were not aware of what a laryngectomy involved.
What Speakeasy Lanarkshire has learnedChallenge :
Explaining to some of the others passengers on the organised tour the difficulty laryngectomies may have with the equipment which allows them to breathe and which causes them to make certain sounds.
Being in a safe, comfortable environment with none of the pressures normally associated with their caring role gave carers time to breathe and be themselves. People with like conditions felt more confident in being out in public
Carers found that if any problems arose others could assist and recommend ways to solve most difficulties