Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineer Simon stays connected with his family
Simon’s life changed dramatically when an accident at home during lockdown saw him paralysed from the shoulders down. He spent six weeks in intensive care after a nine-hour operation to fuse his spine back together and now needs 24-hour personal care.
“DMWS welfare officers Sara and Julie were funny and caring and determined to make things better for our family.”
“My wife Leanne was given a lot of support from DMWS welfare officers Sara and Julie and she felt comfortable offloading her frustrations and anxieties to them. This meant the children benefitted too because she was able to de-stress.”
Simon, a soldier in The Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME), joined the Army in 1996 and completed tours of Bosnia, Iraq, Kenya and Canada. A keen bodybuilder, Simon was instrumental in establishing the Forces Strongman competitions around the UK and has taken the annual title three times. Simon’s life changed dramatically when an accident at home during lockdown
saw him paralysed from the shoulders down. He spent six weeks in intensive care after a nine-hour operation to fuse his spine back together and now needs 24-hour personal care. Due to the pandemic Simon’s wife Leanne and his two children were unable to visit him in hospital. This, he says, really took a toll on him mentally.
A team of two DMWS welfare officers, Sara and Julie, were assigned to assist Simon and his family with his recovery. They visited Simon daily and got him set up on FaceTime so he could re-connect with his family. Sara and Julie liaised with the hospital to allow Leanne to visit and organised accommodation for her to stay in nearby. As Covid restrictions eased, they even arranged for Simon and Leanne to renew their wedding vows in hospital with their children present. This took place on their 20th wedding anniversary and Simon says it played a huge role in rebuilding his self-esteem and bringing the family even closer. The reassurance that his beloved family were being well supported while he was apart from them was an enormous relief to Simon.
Improved experience of health care reducing anxiety and stress
Reduced likelihood of needing NHS Mental Health Crisis Team
Obtained support from 3rdsector reducing need for NHS services
Enabled independent living
Enabled access to military organisations and members groups
Enabled support from buddy and companion services
Reduced time taken by GP for social care and wellbeing issues
Reduced social isolation