Trevor and Anita James found a new lease of life when they moved to Pannel Croft Village.
Anita had a series of aneurysms in the mid-90s which required invasive brain surgery. She was left with epilepsy and balance problems, and also an impaired ability to communicate. She knows the words she wants to say but cannot say more than about 20 words, so Trevor has to work out what she is saying. This left her feeling frustrated and isolated.
Trevor gave up work to become a full-time carer for Anita and they spent long hours at home. Then the couple moved to Pannel Croft.
“It’s changed her life tremendously and that makes me feel better,” Trevor says. “When I see Anita happier it makes me feel happy. She’s a different person since she moved to the Village. She’s happy, confident and proactive.”
Anita now helps as a volunteer with a group for people living with aphasia (communication disorders). The group meets regularly at the Village. “I sit with the boys having a cuppa and I leave her to it,” Trevor says.
“It’s changed my life too. Before, Anita wouldn’t have had the confidence to be left on her own, but she’s so happy here. People make her so welcome. Everyone knows her and talks to her.”
Trevor is also a volunteer with the events team. “Volunteering gives you something to do,” he says. “I can have a laugh and a joke with the chaps. It gives me pleasure.”