Workington couple launch charity bid to help patients talk
Last updated at 14:16, Friday, 02 November 2012
A disabled Workington man has launched a fund-raising campaign for the hospital that helped save his wife’s life.
Keith Matthews, 69, of Cedar Court, wants to raise enough money to donate six iPads to the West Cumberland Hospital in Whitehaven, where his wife Yvonne, 69, was treated after a severe heart attack.
She has been making a steady recovery after being discharged from hospital two weeks ago and Mr Matthews is determined to give something back.
He asked the nurses at the intensive care unit what they needed most, and they said that iPads would help break down the communication barriers between patients and their families.
An application can be downloaded on to the iPad which will allow the patient to type in what they want to say and the iPad will speak their words out loud.
Mr Matthews thought it was a great idea, having experienced communication problems with his wife, as a tracheotomy has made it difficult for her to talk and her medication made it difficult for her to write clearly.
The couple were at Tesco in Workington on Friday to launch their campaign as the supermarket is acting as the main collection point.
Mr Matthews said: “It’s very, very difficult for patients to talk. I think it’s a necessary thing to help them recover.
“The nurses and doctors were very good to us. I could call on them 24/7. They have given me my wife back.
“I would put my life at risk if I have to, to raise money for them. I am determined to get these iPads.
“I want the community to help in doing this.”
Mr Matthews hopes to raise funds through donations from schools, businesses and organisations.
The serial fund-raiser has been in a wheelchair for 30 years.
He injured his spine after becoming trapped under a car and then developed arachnoiditis, a chronic disease which causes swelling to a membrane around nerves of the spinal cord and has left him in pain 24 hours a day.
Alison Sharpe, Tesco community champion, said: “It’s just a great idea and I will do everything I can to help raise that money.”
From tomorrow people can donate to the campaign at the customer service desk at Tesco.
Any organisations which would like to get involved in fund-raising can email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
First published at 11:49, Friday, 02 November 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
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