Barbara’s story

Supported housing kept Barbara and her husband together. She could care for him and live independently after he passed away.

Barbara and her husband moved in to a supported housing scheme on 28 November 1994. She has lived there now for almost 22 years and loves it.

The move became necessary when Barbara’s husband developed emphysema and difficulties with his breathing meant he needed level access accommodation, without a garden to maintain.

Things at the scheme were very different to the couple’s past living situation. Here, Barbara tells their story:

“When we moved here, our lives changed completely. My husband and I had lived in a three bedroom house on the other side of the estate for 54 years, then he developed emphysema, so couldn’t climb the stairs and wasn’t capable of doing the gardening (we had a huge garden at the time). His chest complaint eventually put a strain on his heart so we had to move.

Without supported housing as an option, I think my husband would have had to go in to a care home and I would have had to live on my own. As it was, I got to nurse him myself until he passed away in 1999, and for that I am extremely grateful.

From the moment we moved here it was ideal: no stairs or a garden to tend, and great neighbours. The close we live on is quite secluded and there is plenty of support on-hand with the intercom and the emergency pendant.

Although we don’t get as much personal contact with the scheme manager these days as we used to, she is always there in emergencies or if I want to go for a catch up, when we’ll put the world to rights together. I like having that human touch to things, without it I would be lost.

I love it here and hope to spend many more years at the scheme, with additional support and care when I need it. I am the longest living person on the close, and very proud that I still can do most things for myself. My independence is paramount”.

Help raise awareness

Thousands of people have gained their independence through supported housing. The Starts at Home campaign aims to ensure that people who need extra support will always have a home that meets their needs.

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