A charity that is seeking to transform health and social care through kindness is looking for volunteers.
The Edith Ellen Foundation was set up by Upwell woman Kate Blake and co-founder David Sparkey, who were united by their strong desire to see massive changes in this country’s care system.
Kate’s mother Edie, who the charity is named after, died without pain relief in care after three years of being abused. After watching her mother’s neglect and being able to do nothing about it, Kate vowed to prevent others from going through the same thing.
“We are giving a voice to people in care,” she said. “There are lots of people who want to change care but have no idea how to do it.”
David added: “Once people go into care, there’s almost a psychological shift. They don’t have the confidence to speak up for themselves, they don’t want to be a burden. We know we can make a difference and improve their life.”
But the foundation is not just about helping the people in the care system. They want to set a benchmark of kindness, which means putting kindness and respect ahead of everything else. The foundation involves care home staff and offers training to alter the way they view their job.
“It’s about empowering them and supporting the care providers themselves,” Kate said. “We are bringing people together to solve problems by facing them and dealing with them.”
The foundation has been running for around 18 months and has been trialled at several care centres in Norfolk. They are now looking to expand and eventually become a national charity. Kate and David have visions of an Academy that will train tomorrow’s care leaders.
The scheme has the support of several groups and organisations, including Norfolk Social Services, carers’ forums and the CQC (Care Quality Commission). They have the backing of the Minister of State for Care and Support Norman Lamb and support from the House of Lords.
The charity has around 50 volunteers already that have been meeting with people in care, families and care workers to find out what needs to be changed. But more people are needed to help the foundation expand and help more people.
An open day is being held next Wednesday, January 22, at King’s Lynn Football Club, The Walks Stadium, Tennyson Road, King’s Lynn,Norfolk, PE30 5PB, from 10am to 3pm. This will be an opportunity for anyone interested in the charity to meet Kate and David and find out more.
You can also contact Kate on 07729-171425 or David on 07837-148745. They can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com