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MSWA Bulletin Magazine Spring 2022

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Celebrating 50 years of MSWA | Our commitment to research | New technology taking the pressure off | Water, life, the universe and everything!

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MSWA CLIENT RESPITE: MY FIRSTHAND ACCOUNT I had my first stay at Margaret Doody Respite on a Tuesday. Apart from staff, the first person that I met there was a lovely Greek woman named Mary. My sister Anita was there at the time and, as her husband is Greek, she knows a lot more Greek language than me and they were able to have a conversation. The only Greek I know is Den Milou Elenika, which means “I don’t speak Greek”! On Tuesday afternoon my friend Lynn came and visited me and when I asked if she could stay for dinner, the staff very generously said yes. It was lovely to see her. On Wednesday afternoon my manfriend David came with his old English Sheepdog, and everyone was very excited about the big hairy dog. Later that day my friend Kathleen came for a visit and it was lovely. She has just come back from visiting Ireland where she grew up, and had lots of lovely stories to tell about catching up with brothers,sisters, nieces and nephew. Ros Harman (front right) enjoyed getting to know staff and residents during her stay at Margaret Doody House. Later in the year, when my daughter, her partner and two young kids will come over from Queensland, I am having my late birthday party. My birthday was in March, but COVID-19 restrictions meant a party was out of the question then. I am having a DNA party. As my father was Greek and my mother had a mixture of Irish, Scottish and German in her ancestral heritage, we will enjoy food from all those countries and Respite is an interesting concept. I have got to the stage where sometimes I have trouble getting out of bed in the mornings and sometimes I have trouble standing and transferring to my wheelchair from the toilet. So my older sisters thought it would be good if I experienced a couple of weeks in respite to see what it’s like. On one hand I would rather be at home in my own house, but I accept that I need a full-time carer. On the other hand, I have met some lovely people here. The staff are gorgeous and some of the other guests are very interesting too. Margaret Doody House is a nice place and has a lovely outdoor area just off the main living room. Everything is wheelchair accessible and staff are always there to help with anything that is needed. As long as I get plenty of visitors, I am happy to be here. The shopping centre is just down the road and it has some nice cafes, so if one gets a chance, one can go down there and have some rest and relaxation. The rooms are pleasant here, with fully mechanised beds that move up and down in all directions. The gardens are lovely and in the morning one hears many birds singing. Nevertheless, I am looking forward to going home again. My sisters are trying to find someone who would live in with me so I can stay in my own home. I hope they are successful. Respite is a wonderful service provided by MSWA for people with neurological conditions and I’m sure Clients are very grateful for the service. I have made up a playlist of music from those countries too. 30 31

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