Maidenhead Mencap
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Newsletter
Issue  No.10   October 2017.

Highview has a new look. One of the resident users is the Alzheimer’s Society. Due to the closure of a centre in Oxfordshire, we had been offered some good condition armchairs. They arrived on Monday and are eventually going to be most welcome. I say eventually, because we have to dispose of some of the existing ones. The new chairs are bright and reasonably comfortable, in their red and green livery. Some of the older chairs had become uncomfortable and many were certainly scruffy.

Those who have anxiously awaited news on the proposed Garden Room, will be pleased to know that the back garden is now being prepared to receive this structure. By early 2018, it should be ready for use. Work is also going ahead on the garden at the front of the house. It’s all happening.

A few of our valiant volunteers have suffered injuries and illness recently. The good news is that they are all showing signs of improvement.
Diana Swaffield is recovering well from her leg injury.
John and Shirley Foulger have both been poorly, and are responding well to treatment. We all look forward to seeing them around once more.

I am looking for an additional interest. I have written a monthly voluntary charity column in the Maidenhead Advertiser, and for the last ten years and in the Express Group for nine years. This is something that I have really enjoyed doing and I have around 50 charities and community groups that regularly contact me. On Sunday 3rd September, an email from the Editor told me that the column would cease to run after the current issue. A footnote told the readers that this would be the final issue. I have kept a folder of ‘condolences’ as my charity friends wonder why I have given up. Charity Matters nicely filled the gap left when I retired after 48 years with Boots the Chemists.

I am asking my charities to remain in touch as I am looking for an alternative outlet. I have written a short column for the Heathrow villager for many years, so it can be done, but it is not so easy to get information from more distant parts. I still do not have complete mobility and I need something to occupy me. The loss of Charity Matters has left me devastated. I nearly picked up a duster, the other day. That’s getting serious!!

Don’t forget those wonderful little tubs that are provided by the Lions Club. They are invaluable, particularly to those who live alone. A slip of paper includes names of ‘next of kin’, doctor, allergies, medication- in fact anything that may be needed in an emergency. Most people keep the tub in the ‘fridge with a sticker on the main entrance to indicate that you are using the service. We have a few tubs at Highview. They are available on Club nights.

Don’t forget that the Citizens Advice Service [CAB] has introduced ‘Adviceline’, that can be accessed from Monday -Friday 9am-5pm on 03444 111 444.                                                  

A further reminder that Mencap Head Office offers a ‘Wills and Trusts Service’ - call Gina on 020 7696 6925 or email willsandtrusts@mencap.org.uk

Braywick Heath Nurseries on the Braywick Road, Maidenhead, give employment to many people who would find mainstream employment difficult. They can provide most of your gardening needs too. The nursery is well worth a visit. Contact 01628 622510 admin@braywickheath.co.uk

Monday Club is always our biggest weekly event. There are around 60 members. Our friends from the Ladies’ Circle provide tea and biscuits each week. The evening begins with a disco. They have an activity that cycles between Art, Karaoke, Bingo and Superstars with additional attractions fitted in. This week, 25th September, they had a special treat. The singing group from Burnham,‘Pop Goes the Choir’ entertained them and gave them the opportunity to take part.
Jeanette arrived with cake for all members and a special cake for the choir to take home. The good news is that Pop Goes The Choir have promised to come back nearer to Christmas with seasonal music. 

Wednesday Club still needs additional helpers. It was a great bonus when Mrs Patsy Smith joined us. She is an ex school teacher and has good ideas for craft and other activities. Michael will not be around for a few weeks, because he begins at Bath University any day now.  His sister Maya, who is studying medicine in London is of course, also not present with us. We hope they will be back during the Christmas holidays.

Jeanette is now back from her break, but Peter and Lindy of course take holidays together, so the volunteers have been very limited. We rely very much on help from the carers and from Doreen, the ex Pets As Therapy lady who comes when she has a spare evening. Candy, her PAT dog died last year, but Doreen continues to join us.

Hugh provides the disco that is loved by all. Of course, it is more fun when there is somebody to push your wheelchair.

Highview Toy Library is remaining busy, even with the loss of the school age children who can only come during the holidays. The holidaymakers should all be back. Vijay and Lavanya with their children Snigdha and Samanvi  should be back now and we look forward to hearing their news, as they spent the entire school holidays in India.                                                                                                                                                          

We shall be taking a stall at the Combined Charities Fair at Maidenhead Town Hall on Saturday 4th November. We have draw tickets for sale and programmes for admission.

Valerie J. Bosley