"Without the support of the workers and the introductions I would have no contact with the outside world from one week to another."Bernard, over 70 from Tyburn, Birmingham
This is the story of Bernard Green, a man in his 70s from Birmingham who, by caring for his elderly mother and having had knee surgery, found himself lonely and isolated. Feeling reluctant to leave the house, he had a visit from an Ageing Better outreach worker who put him in touch with a local charity. He now has visitors each week, is taking part in two Ageing Better social groups, and is beginning to make friends in his local area. He's grown in confidence and as a consequence, keen on joining other activities in the area.
Bernard Green is in his late 70s, a well-travelled and educated man from Birmingham who enjoys interaction with other people.
Having moved to Erdington, to the north east of Birmingham city centre, a little over 12 years ago, Bernard is not as socially-connected as one may expect. This is because he was a carer for his elderly mother and has not had the opportunity to interact and make friends within the area.
Sadly, Bernard's mother passed away last year leaving him grieving and isolated. He became very depressed and an impending knee operation made him very anxious and reluctant to join activities which could help him meet new people.
Following surgery, Bernard was discharged at short notice to an empty house and without any care or support.
An outreach worker from Ageing Better in Birmingham heard about Bernard and his situation and put him in touch with a charity called "Home from Hospital Care". They visit him on a weekly basis to ensure his recovery is as smooth as possible and he's getting some social contact. Recovery from the operation has taken some weeks but Bernard is very eager to become involved in activities and so through Ageing Better, he's been introduced to two social groups in the local area and is now beginning to make friends and grow in confidence. He has a cheeky sense of humour and with his confidence levels increasing, this is becoming more and more evident!
Bernard has praised the work of Ageing Better saying, "Without the support of the workers and the introductions I would have no contact with the outside world from one week to another."Bernard is looking forward to being able to get back in his car and drive, as this will allow him to attend activities every day of the week.
*Bernard Green is not this man's real name, so while the story is real, the man in question asked to be anonymous.