Living after loss and looking forward

All my life, I’d been around people, I’d been in the Navy, then worked in industry managing over 1600 people for many years, which was a privilege, then worked as a driving instructor, so I was communicating with people, then with children with disabilities. Until… my wife had a stroke. Then I looked after her for 9 years, until she passed away and that’s when everything changed. Losing my wife, of 65 years, done me in – we’d know each other since primary school, lost touch when we went to high school because back then it was girls and boy’s schools, but at 15 we reconnected and that was it.

I was just feeling very low, and struggling through a depressed period and knew that I needed to be around people. I’d just been stuck in the house, and my daughters told me that I needed to get out. I’d stopped going out, even to get my shopping, the girls were doing everything for me. The only thing I did, was collect my granddaughters from school. I needed to communicate with others again, I was just sitting at home watching the TV. But the problem with that is the TV doesn’t talk back to you. So, you just end up cursing it. My daughter told me there were groups happening at St Johns by Life in Community and I should try and go. I’d driven past a few times. Then one day I just bit the bullet and turned up to the church, after dropping my granddaughters off.

I needed to do something regular to get out of the house and you’ve given me a place to come, where I feel welcomed and can talk to others. Being older, you have to be mindful of things. It’s nice to be comfortable with a group of like-minded people. Most of my other friends have passed away and no one is left from my original friendship group but I have made new friends now. You’ve provided me with friendship and a place with a lovely and welcoming attitude each week. I want to keep coming until I can’t and whilst overall I’m alright now, I still have my good days and bad days, but that’s part of life. I look forward to coming, it’s the highlight of my week!

“You provide a needed service for people in the community who are elderly, who have lost a lot of friends and family. You’ve provided me with a new family.”

Delivery Partners

Wider determinants of health (WDH) are a range of social, environmental and economic factors which impact directly on the health (physical and mental) of the population. We have been working in partnership with the Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (BCHFT) to identify how best to address some of the wider determinants of health, and how they impact on the wellbeing of our local residents. We are pleased to be delivering services which address some of these wider determinants of health and that help to support people who are in need.

Project Funded By:


Our partners

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