Caitlin is autistic and has Friedreich's Ataxia which affects her mobility. She's in her early teens and uses a wheelchair most of the time which she has to propel herself. Not only was that extremely tiring for her but it limited her independence. She needed a new rigid-frame wheelchair with height-adjustable handles and most importantly a powered front wheel which could be clamped to the front of the chair to help her get around without having to do it herself. This would give her complete independence, making it much easier for her to access school as well as having days out with friends and family. We were more than happy to step in and help out with a contribution for such a deserving person.
Wayne has a diagnosis of schizo-effective disorder, ADHD and is currently being assessed for autism. He has auditory hallucinations which he says are a constant commentary on his life and during times of increased stress he becomes very agitated, often resulting in self-harm and damage to property. Sadly his mental health deteriorated and while the Secondary Mental Health Team sorted out some suitable supported housing for him, Wayne had to find emergency accommodation which he could ill afford. We were delighted to help him out.
E-mail from Hayley, Wayne's support worker
Wow what can I say?! I am absolutely flabbergasted that you have paid this, and so quickly without any request for further information.
Thank you all so much for your help. This will help Wayne so much and reduce the stress that we have all been feeling regarding this situation.
Thank you once again.
Mental Health Social Worker/ Approved Mental Health Professional
Betty has Down's Syndrome as well as a congenital heart defect, hypotonia and hypermobility. She had open heart surgery when she was just four years old and even now still has heart problems and needs regular check-ups to make sure everything's OK. Her hypotonia and hypermobility mean that she gets pain and stiffness in her joints and muscles so she frequently gets tired even after a rest. And as if all that wasn't enough, she has poor balance and co-ordination.
Getting out and about as a family without Betty being in a wheelchair, which wasn't exactly helpful for Betty's physical health and independence, was proving difficult so we helped out with buying this specialist trike and now Betty's out on the road with the rest of the family.
Harry has spastic diplegic cerebral palsy which means that he lacks strength, balance, coordination and concentration. This all makes everyday life pretty difficult for him, and on top of all that he's been diagnosed with autism. Like most 9 year old boys, Harry likes to be on the move so we've helped out with the purchase of a specialist Tomcat trike, giving him a degree of independence and freedom when he's out cycling with his twin sister.
E-mail from Andrew
Hi to you all at the trust!!!
Its Andrew Hough & this is my new wheelchair!!! Other than a couple of tiny adjustments, its absolutely perfect!!!!! I just wanted to say thanks again for all your help!!!! (I hope you can read the thankyou sign!! Although, I'm never going to be a professional sign writer!!!!!)
I hope you get this email!!! Please feel free to get back in touch with me. I'd like to say thanks in person!!!!!
Anyway, please take care, all the best, many thanks once again, speak to you soon hopefully!!!!
David had an unwitnessed fall which resulted in severe memory loss. He spent some time in hospital and was eventually discharged into permanent care. He has no known family to support him at home, nor is any next of kin known. He doesn't remember any details of his family or friends, he doesn't have any visitors and he's very confused about his current situation as a result of which he needs 24 hour care. With Christmas looming, his social worker Nyasha got in touch with us to see if we could help out with some Christmas presents for him so he could have some new clothes and also join in with the care home's Christmas activities. With no one visiting him and no likelihood of any presents from anyone, she didn't want him watching the other residents opening their presents in front of him and not being able to join in the fun of Christmas. We were more than happy to help out and as a result David really enjoyed his Christmas.
E-mail from Nyasha
Happy New Year.
Thank you so much with your support in David’s situation. I managed to deliver the cheque before Christmas. The care home staff were very pleased and arranged to take him shopping. I gave them your email address to email the receipt confirming that they had received the cheque. I hope they managed to do so as I have not been able to visit them since then.
Once again thank you for your help.
Social Worker and Best Interest Assessor
People We've Helped
Just some of the many people we've helped over the years
E-mail from Mick and Tracey
Please can you thank everyone involved at the Ruth Dickson Trust for their help with getting our bathroom adapted to help Tracey. The work has all been carried out and Tracey has been able to get in and enjoy the benefits of showering herself rather than having to have a strip wash every day. This will make a massive improvement to Tracey's daily life, and again we would just like to say THANKS. We're massively indebted to you, please keep up your kind donations to help others, it really does mean so much to those that need it.
Mick & Tracey
Tracey is 52 years old and three years ago she had a stroke which left her with severe weakness on her right side, reduced mobility, depression and significant speech impairment along with a host of other difficulties. She lives at home with her children and her husband Mick who continues to work full-time as well as care for Tracey. She was unable to access the bathing facilities at home because of her physical disabilities so Mick got in touch with us to see if we could help out with the cost of converting their bathroom into a shower room which Tracey could use. We were delighted to help and now life's got a lot easier for Tracey.
April suffers from rheumatoid arthritis and although it's relatively well-controlled, she's been left with widespread chronic damage and deformity from a long history of inflammatory joint disease, all this in addition to having contracted polio at a very early age, leaving her severely disabled and very reliant on her husband for all sorts of things. Back in 2006 we helped her out with the purchase of a mobility scooter but after many years of use and many miles covered, it finally reached the end of the road and needed replacing. We were delighted to help out once more with a brand new machine, so now she's back on the road again!
Andrew has a spinal chord injury which means that he's permanently dependant on a wheelchair. He has no movement or feeling in his trunk or legs which not only affects his balance and co-ordination but also means that he is unable to stand independently. He needed an Oswestry Standing Frame to give him the ability to stand on his own. Standing on your own might not seem like a big deal but to Andrew it was immense and we were really pleased to get it for him.
This is Joanne and her dog Kaiser. Joanne suffers from dystonia which is a neurological condition causing movement disorders, one of which is muscle contractions resulting in abnormal fixed postures. We helped Joanne buy an off-road bike so that she and Kaiser could go for long walks in the open countryside together.
Ella's two years old and suffers from microcephaly and poor myelination of the brain which means that she has to have support when sitting. We've helped her out twice now, once with a GoTo postural support seat (that's the one in the photograph) and then a few months later with a Splashy portable bath seat.
Tamzin has learning difficulties, ADHD and some autistic traits. She found things very difficult at school - she was unhappy, she couldn't stay focused on her school work and she couldn't relate to other young people. We stepped in and funded a year's placement at Chuckle Stars, a not-for-profit Saturday morning musical theatre organisation, giving her a new hobby, friendship and confidence in a protected environment, whilst at the same time giving her family some valuable respite.