Getting through it, a father’s perspective

Categories: Community Engagement.

The majority of carers report that caring for someone has a negative impact on their own health. In Jamie’s case, he was diagnosed with severe depression and has suffered mental health problems following the loss of his wife Nicola.

Jamie’s experience of caring for Nicola motivated him to find a way to help those who also find themselves in a caring role. Together with his business partner Helen Brewster, they have created a cloud based software platform as part of their social enterprise Nic’s Legacy.

The platform is aimed at those who find themselves living (or caring for someone) with a long-term or serious medical condition, including at the end of life. It should enable them to better plan, schedule and communicate the daily tasks associated with caring for someone.

“We are using technology to change the way the world cares, we hope to be able to help with all kinds of issues and savings, bed-blocking in particular,” said Helen.

As part of their journey, Jamie and Helen are also writing a book publicising hospices and their services, highlighting that they aren’t just there for end of life.

While the main focus is on hospice services, the book will also include stories from other fathers who have lost their partner.

“The idea is to share what life is like after the death of a partner, trying to bring children up, all from the male perspective. We all know that men and women having different coping strategies, men tend to be a little more insular,” explained Jamie.

It is hoped that the book will reinforce the message that support is available in many different forms and not limited to just the patient. Jamie had significant support from his local hospice, ranging from complementary therapy through to grief counselling, but it only happened through a chance telephone conversation.

Jamie and Helen are looking for further contributors to share their story and experience for publication. If this may interest you or someone you know, you can contact Jamie directly at Nic’s Legacy by emailing jamie@nicslegacy.org.uk You can also find out more about the project on the Nic’s Legacy website.