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Building connections with live-in care: Pete & Madelene’s story

Pete is 37 years old and living with cerebral palsy, and following a long spell in hospital, he began receiving live-in support from our central team. From a man who was once lacking in confidence with very little speech, Pete is now living happily and independently at home with the support of his live-in carer, Madelene.

Pete: “Hello, I’m Pete. I was born with cerebral palsy, but I have achieved many qualifications and have also studied at university. I live independently at home with the help of my live-in carer, and I also have a new van which my carer can use to take me to my appointments, join me for a coffee or take a trip to the library.

“I don’t remember much from the last year, but I do know that Madelene made me feel the need to talk again, when I didn’t for a while.”

Madelene has been working as a live-in carer for Helping Hands for one year and started caring for Pete after he returned home from hospital.

Madelene: “When I met Pete, he was very poorly. He didn’t talk for about four months. He stayed in bed for long periods of time because he didn’t have any energy, and he would only communicate with me with his eyes.

“We both wanted to build a connection and boost his confidence, and I made the effort to understand him better. We listened to soft music, made fresh food together and bought flowers so that we could make his house a home. We talked a lot, and I told him how important he is and how much he is needed by those he loves.

“Step by step, I started to help him out of bed so that he could eat his meals at the dining table, and together with his family and other supporting carers, we helped him get back to his normal self. After some time, Pete started to talk again – and it’s been amazing.

“I’m so happy that Pete has opened up. He told me that he had completely lost his confidence, but he is improving every day. Now that we are ten months down the line, I’ve noticed a big difference.”

Pete: “I’ve got lots of things to look forward to now, and I am going on a cruise next year.”

Madelene: “Supporting Pete is amazing, and it’s so nice that we are able to do things together now. We have been for lunch, dinner, visited friends and have had so many nice things to do. Pete has a great sense of humour, he’s intelligent and he observes the world in his own way.”

Pete & Madelene

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