Episode #2 of Our Heart2Heart Campaign

Friendship is at the heart of everything we do, and behind every friendship is a good story. A story of compassion and kindness, respect and understanding.

With more than 150 service users across the Greater Belfast area, Bryson Care One2One has brought together people from all four corners of the city to combat social isolation. Our service is personal, enabling, and inclusive so that vulnerable people are able to live independently in the comfort of their own home.

It’s the kind of face-to-face support that can restore confidence and ultimately boost personal well-being – both on the part of the Support Worker and the individuals they assist – leading to long-lasting friendships between one another. And they each have a story to share.

Vera & Dorothy

BRYSON: Dorothy, tell us a little about yourself and how did you find the One2One service…

Dorothy: “I fell and broke my hip, so I was in Meadowlands for rehabilitation. When I came out, I really began to feel that I wasn’t able to do housework – I didn’t have the balance to use a vacuum cleaner or anything like that. So, it was through the information that I got from Meadowlands up at Musgrave Park Hospital that I found One2One and Vera. And how long have you been with me?”

Vera: “About four months?”

Dorothy: “Yes, four months or so. I think the good thing about Bryson Care is that, if anything happens or the Support Worker can’t come, Bryson can still supply relief. I mean, when Adele wasn’t able, that’s how I met Vera.”

Vera: “That’s right. I’m here every Wednesday 11am-1pm, and once we stop chatting [laughs], we get our work done.”

BRYSON: And Vera, how did you discover One2One?

Vera: “I live in Glengormley and [a One2One ad] was in a community magazine. I had done this sort of work in England, so I got in touch [with One2One]. At the minute, I have six clients – and they’re my regulars. Dorothy’s on Wednesdays. I mean, I got lovely people… really and truly. Dorothy has to shout at me [laughs], she’s like, ‘come on, stop talking! Let’s get some work done’.”

Dorothy: “Because I was looking for help, the man that was coming here was very willing… and this sounds sexist, women are better at housework than men [laughs]. Full stop! But One2One told me they were recruiting, and had somebody in mind that would suit me. That’s how I met Vera.

Vera: “And we just take it from here. We organise the housework ourselves, so each week we know what needs done… hoovering, bed change, that kind of thing.”

BRYSON: It’s nice and flexible in that sense…

Vera: “It is. And we get a lot done… after our chat.”

Dorothy: “[Laughs] Yes, after our chat.”

BRYSON: This question is really for you, Dorothy. What to you is the most important feature of One2One?

Dorothy: “It’s really the Support Worker. Now, Vera doesn’t do housework for [all her clients]. But that’s really what I needed, and I look forward to her visits.”

BRYSON: And Vera, when you noticed the ad in the community magazine, what interested you in the service?

Vera: “It’s because I have previous experience, and really I enjoy chatting [with the clients]. I mean, I was just telling Dorothy, I really enjoy coming here. It’s coming and get involved with people – and getting to know people. I’ve been very lucky, all the women I visit are lovely. I feel as though I’m really helping – it’s a lovely job, really.”

BRYSON: Is there anything you’d like to add? Or any final comments about the One2One service?

Dorothy: “I find it good. I know some people think it’s expensive. But my reasons for doing it are 1) I don’t have to look for anybody. I know the One2One workers are vetted and are safe coming into the house. And 2) the Support Workers have the backing of Bryson. So, from that point of view, the back-up is good for the client and the staff.

If Bryson Care One2One is something you’re interested in – either as a Support Worker or potential service user – don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and call 028 9034 7731.

Or you can find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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