Investing in communities and people

Ten projects across Scotland are celebrating a share of £4,520,102  from Big Lottery Fund Scotland’s Investing in Communities programme.

Strathcarron’s Hospice at Home project will use their grant of £702,573 to support people at the end of their lives, and their carers’, across Forth Valley as well as Cumbernauld and Kilsyth in North Lanarkshire.

Marjory Mackay is Director of Nursing at Strathcarron Hospice:

“I’ve worked in palliative care since 1993 where there is a huge opportunity and sense of satisfaction in making a difference when it matters most. And that’s what we’ll be able to do with our Hospice at Home Service which will allow our care assistants to provide hands-on care for people in their own homes, in the last few weeks of their lives. Our role is to offer practical and emotional support and our focus is on comfort, acknowledging the end is near while recognising that life is valuable until the end.

Marjory Mackay, Director of Nurse, Strathcarron Hospice
Marjory Mackay, Director of Nurse, Strathcarron Hospice

Strathcarron Hospice and our Hospice at Home project is not replacing NHS or Social Care but rather providing an extra layer of help, with the ability to spend much longer periods of time with individuals and their carers. Crucially, thanks to this project, that time can be spent in their homes. We’ll have the time to be with them, to listen to their concerns and to help with the things that are most important to them. We can help with personal care and comfort measures, provide information and support carers in the uncertainties of caring for someone at the end of life.

“The care assistants who will staff this project have experience in general nursing but also experience in hospice care. There is specialised training for working in a hospice which is then followed up with hands-on experience. Strathcarron nurses are skilled at making an individual’s wishes matter at the end of their life and are drawn to this line of work because they have big hearts and because each person matters and they want to make things better.

“Humanity is often the element that is squeezed out of a busy and constrained health service and we are able to show people that human compassion. The project is for individuals living the last couple of weeks of their lives so, for our nurses, the person and family are central to everything they do with the emphasis on what the person needs. We will be able to respond rapidly to those who wish to be at home. That may be individuals currently known to Strathcarron Hospice or we will receive referrals from the NHS through our existing links to them.

“Strathcarron Hospice needs to expand its services in the community and this resource will enable us to test what is going to work best. We know Hospice at Home will make a huge difference to how and where people die and the funding is helping to make it happen.”

Click here for information on the other projects who have received funding today.

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