Maidenhead Mencap
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Issue  No.7   July 2018.

We have heard a lot about the NHS and the celebrations for the 70th Anniversary. We at Maidenhead Mencap have certainly been making good use of the services. Diana Swaffield, one of the Monday Club team, fell in her garden and is in hospital having her hip sorted.

Liz Kermode from Monday Club is in Wexham Park Hospital undergoing treatment for an existing condition.

Rosemary Broadbridge has been in High Wycombe Hospital for the past few days. Her daughter Teresa tells us that she is feeling very much better and will be back home shortly.

Even I, who up to two years ago had never been near to a doctor or hospital for many years, have now been undergoing treatment at St Mark's Podiatry Clinic, so between us, we are keeping them busy. In fact, it did not help when one of the wheelchairs ran over my toes during Wednesday Club's wheelchair disco.

My own brother had been treated at Wexham Park Hospital, before being returned to his care home, where he died at the weekend. I am really grateful to the team of drivers who have conveyed me to visit him during the past two years. They included Hugh, Nev and Jeanette from Mencap and David and John, other friends. The drivers, of course, all became friends with Keith, even though he did not show much enthusiasm.

Some wonderful musicians, who provide charity concerts at their barn at Winter Hill, will be busking in the foyer of the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel from 3pm on the afternoon of Thursday July 5th, a day when the hospital is celebrating the 70th birthday of the NHS. The friends are Robert and Deborah Behrmann and Norman MacSween [piano]. They will be collecting to raise finds for the unit where Robert's sister had been treated in intensive care. The Behrmann's receive our newsletter.

On Tuesday, we were treated to another of the concerts provided by the drama group The Friendly Bombs. This small organisation has been in existence for twenty years. Many of the original members are still taking part. All members have a learning disability. They are based at St Peter's Church in central Burnham. The Vicar, Rev Bill Jackson clearly loves them all, and the whole atmosphere is one of love and care. Several Monday Club members are part of Friendly Bombs.

On Tuesday, they produced several play-lets, taken from past productions. Stephen P, Jane B and Dougal W were among the cast. we understand that the next event will take place on 6th November.

We have not yet heard from quite a number of you, regarding the new Data Protection Regulations. We hope that you will want to remain on our list and continue to receive newsletters and any other communications from us.

Optalis will be presenting 'Daily Living Made Easy', a free public event to be held in the Desborough Theatre, Town Hall, Maidenhead SL6 1RF, on 12th September from 10.30am -2pm. This will be an opportunity to see simple tools and devices to help people who have difficulties with vision, hearing, mobility or general daily living, to stay as well and independent as possible. the same venue at 10.30am, there will be an opportunity to hear about OPAF and it's work representing the voice of older people in the Borough.

Monday Club members recently enjoyed their evening on the Thames for the annual Boat Trip. It is always difficult to get everybody to the boat on time. If there are delays in gathering the members on a normal club night, they just miss a bit of club. If they delay on the river night, they all miss part of the trip, while the boat is kept waiting.

As usual Colin had organised a night of fine weather. Everybody was given a packed supper, which of course was very popular. The trip went through Boulter's Lock and along the beautiful Cliveden Reach, before turning at the wide bit and returning through Boulter's Lock to Bray. Tracey was able to wave to her parents, who were looking out of their windows that overlook the river. There are always a lot of people waving. This makes the trip even more enjoyable. Thanks to all who helped.

Last Monday was an ideal occasion to admire the garden, look at the new hanging baskets and enjoy refreshments outside, while doing puzzles and throwing beanbags.

Wednesday Club, apart from the wheelchair disco, is more leisurely. We can always use more helpers, but the carers are always willing to take part, so we can still have lots of fun. The main activity is jigsaw puzzles. These are done by the carers, with assistance from the members, but great satisfaction when at the end 30 pieces are in the right place and the picture is complete.

When Jeanette comes, invariably she brings one of her cakes, which she places on the fridge top. One of the lads who had no speech arrives, he immediately looks towards the fridge top. Then of course if a cake is there, everybody forgets waist-lines.

Patsy has a great talent in making things out of paper plates. Lindy loves helping them all to draw and cuts out paper gingerbread men to colour. We have lots of fun.

Valerie J Bosley