As well as providing weekly telephone support during the COVID Crisis and assisting where needed with food and medication supplies, we have also introduced a monthly newsletter to raise spirits and remain connected with those who we are support. Please do read our newsletters below.

April 2020

Dear Amy (name changed to protect privacy)

It’s always a pleasure speaking to you each week and to get to know you even more. We hope you and your partner have had a peaceful and safe Easter. The moment it is safe for Jacqui to get you out on that mobility scooter she will be doing so! Until then we will keep in telephone contact and send you occasional letters so we can all stay positive during this very strange and difficult time.

We thought it might be nice for you to start to get to know a little bit more about our service although I know you are well informed already. For some of those we support, our pet therapy service is much enjoyed. It is a proven fact that stroking and patting man’s best friend can help to reduce stress and anxiety. I know we don’t need to tell you that as a dog owner yourself!

Daisy is one of our special pet therapy dogs and she is owned by Jacqui who has been part of the service from the outset. Daisy is an English Springer Spaniel who was rescued at the age of 2 after the previous owners were no longer able to take care of her. She was incredibly thin and nervous at first but with the love, care and commitment from Jacqui she has gone on to thrive. She is now 12 years old but still has the energy of a puppy. Daisy can relate to the experience of physical ill health and pain. This year she became very poorly and needed a major operation. We as a team were so relieved when she pulled through and made such a remarkable recovery. Daisy thrives on giving and receiving attention and she is incredibly intuitive to emotions. In fact, when Jacqui’s own father was coming to the end of his life, Daisy leapt over the cot sides of his bed and lay beside him. She is a most welcome visitor at any of our groups or events. Recently Leonie ran all 13.1 miles of the Falmouth Half Marathon event to raise funds for our annual pet therapy insurance.

 

We are currently missing running our support groups on a monthly basis in Truro and Falmouth. We call the groups SHARE. A chance to share refreshments, share thoughts, share feelings and share connection with others. We try and make the groups as relaxed and informal as possible so that everyone feels welcome. The group nearest to you Amy is likely to move to All Saints Church in Highertown. We provide free transport wherever possible. Once the lockdown measures are over, we will be planning a great party and would love you to come along if you feel well enough at the time.

We would like to leave you with a positive quote from the “Positive Outlooks Community”. If you have Facebook which I know some of those we work with do – you can sign up to their page. It is a brilliant source of love, care, compassion and empathy for all those struggling for whatever reason. I know we have both found their posts heartfelt particularly at the current time.

All our Best Wishes

Leonie and Jacqui

Following on from the positive feedback from last month's newsletter, we have decided to make it a
regular event until we can resume our monthly Share groups and see you all again.
In this age of technology it tends to be only bills that land in our Hallways, and who wants to read those!!!
Leonie and I are so grateful for the support of our wonderful volunteers Angela, Seren, Corinne, Victoria,
Claire and Paul who are all helping with our weekly phone calls and collecting shopping and
prescriptions. We are also grateful of the ongoing support and encouragement of our Patron Sue Kittow
a local Journalist and Author.
Just to remind you, we are always on the end of the phone if you need an extra chat. If we don't answer
please leave a message and we will get back in touch asap. Don't sit there worrying about things, a
problem shared......and who knows we may be able to help and if not know someone who can.
We really can't wait to resume our monthly Share groups and have lots of ideas to make them fun.
Exciting news is that we have been offered free Office Space in Truro and possibly the same premises
for our Truro Share. We will keep you updated.
We were also on BBC Radio Cornwall last month, when one of our Falmouth members Neil spoke about
the effects of Lockdown on Mental Health. I was then interviewed on the work we do at Connecting
Lives. I have to admit I was pretty nervous being interviewed by telephone and got a little tongue-tied. I
said subscribing insead of prescribing, but I have always been known for my malapropisms , so took it
on the chin. Pleased to say the interview generated a lot of interest and we have a new therapy dog
waiting to join us.
We love hearing how you are trying to keep occupied so will share some of the things you have told us,
as it may be something others would like to try.
Colouring, crosswords, baking, gardening, reading, jigsaw,s anything that requires concentration helps to
distract us from anxious thoughts. If you would like to try something new, but can't access materials
please let us know.
For those of you waiting for one-to-one support, we will be in touch as soon as we are able to resume.
Will close for now, stay safe
Sending Best wishes always
Jacqui, Leonie and the Connecting Lives team.

MAY 2020

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