A stroke survivor from the East Riding, unable to leave home for over a year following a stroke, can finally enjoy “life-changing” days out thanks to guidance from the new RDAC Hubs service, part of Driving Mobility.
Maureen (81) and husband Colin, (82), from Hessle, were an active couple enjoying days out and trips abroad, including in their VW Campervan. In 2018, a stroke left Maureen unable to walk, whilst as her caregiver, Colin’s health also deteriorated.
Daughter Rachael (50) said: “It has been a very tough time. Mum was stuck in the house and unable to get out for almost a year and my parents effectively lost their independence and social interaction. I really wanted to allow them quality time outside of the house, as they were so isolated. However, Mum can’t walk following her stroke, she is catheterised and has poor cognition, (she also has Hydrocephalus) so it isn’t easy to manage trips out. Using public transport is all but impossible. I commute and work full time and I can be tired if I’ve been up throughout the night with Mum. I despaired of finding a solution. Then I met Kirsty from RDAC Hull, which was a real turning point.”
Kirsty Flint is a specialist Occupational Therapist in Driving Assessment at RDAC. RDAC is part of the charitable Driving Mobility network of assessment centres which provide support and guidance for disabled and older drivers and those seeking personal independence. She is also Community Mobility Coordinator of the centre’s new Hubs Project which advises on accessible transport – including local bus and community transport through to accessible train and plane travel.
Having met Rachael at a Stroke Educational Programme, Kirsty was able to reassure her that solutions were available. Amongst other information, Kirsty signposted the family towards local charity Motorvation, in South Cave, which provides accessible transport and days out to locations of their choosing.
Rachael said: “It has been a ray of sunshine and a link to normality for all of us. I can’t explain it any other way. Motorvation collects us in a wheelchair accessible vehicle (WAV) and takes us to venues that are disabled friendly and accessible. Our first trip to Shibden Hall in Halifax was perhaps a little ambitious, so we have organised visits closer to home, including to Ledsham, near Leeds and the marvellous ‘Sistine’ exhibition in Hull Minster recently. It’s been great to be able to take my parents outside of the house and the trips give us all something to look forward to. I’m really very grateful to Driving Mobility’s RDAC centre and Motorvation for making this possible. It has made a significant difference to my family’s health and well-being.”
Kirsty Flint comments: “The national Driving Mobility centres deliver excellent services including adapted driving assessments. With the launch of Hubs, seven centres including RDAC now also provide wider transport guidance. Hubs services include free information so individuals can remain independently mobile without use of a car and we can signpost people to local services, such as Motorvation. I believe our new offering will enable more people to retain or regain social activities within their community through access to essential and accessible transport information.”
For information regarding the RDAC Hubs Project contact:
Kirsty Flint, Community Mobility Coordinator (HUBS Project)
Specialist Occupational Therapist in Driving Assessment (RDAC Hull/Scunthorpe)
Telephone: 0300 300 2240. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org