Wednesday, 22 May 2013


If you haven't seen it already on the facebook page, one of my pet hates is 'lack' of dignity.

It amazes me , that even now, you hear that something ( which to me is common sense and respect) can be overlooked.

I always took the approach; when caring; that I was a guest in their home. Invited to help at what would be a sensitive time for that person and their families. Manners and respect, always. Surely, this goes hand in hand with maintaining a persons dignity at 'all' time?

 It must be such a soul searching decision to have to make and accept outside care. What concerns or worries would you have? How many 'strangers' would be coming into YOUR home, what if I don't like the carer...what if they don't like me....what about the personnal care, toiletting, personal space, me, my home!!!! It goes on doesn't it...and if you are in this profession or find yourself caring for your own, please, please be aware of the concerns or anxieties this person may have.

 Over the years there were those who would do as much as they could before the carer arrived, or they would insist that they had 'managed' to wash/cook/taken meds. Sound familiar? Did you ever question why they may have decided that they could do it. Were they able to or could they have just been too embarrassed to let an 'outsider' assist them to shower and dress.

It takes time to trust, especially with something so personal. By showing respect, maintaining their dignity and 'remembering your manners', will all help for trust to be instated.

Now, I would like to highlight 'DIGNITY CHAMPIONS'....have you heard about it or know how to become one ?

This is their link and this is what they are all about...promoting dignity in care...

"Becoming a Dignity Champion

older person A Dignity Champion is someone who believes passionately that being treated with dignity is a basic human right, not an optional extra. They believe that care services must be compassionate, person centred, as well as efficient, and are willing to try to do something to achieve this. So far over 40,000 people have signed up to be Dignity Champions, all pledging to challenge poor care, to act as good role models and, through specific guidelines issued by the campaign, to educate and inform all those working around them.
A Dignity Champion says:
"I have handed out Dignity Challenge Cards to all staff in my care home - each time we have a team meeting we focus on one of the 10 Dignity Challenges and discuss what we can do to meet that challenge. Each meeting results in us making
changes to the way we provide care."

Dignity Champions are willing to:
  • Stand up and challenge disrespectful behaviour
  • Act as good role models by treating other people with respect, particularly those who are less able to stand up for themselves
  • Speak up about dignity to improve the way that services are organised and delivered
  • Influence and inform colleagues
  • Listen to and understand the views and experiences of citizens.
Dignity Champions are all committed to taking action, however small, to create a care system that has compassion and respect for those using its services. Each Dignity Champion's role varies depending on their knowledge and influence and the type of work they are involved in. There are many small things that you can do that can have a big impact on people's lives, as well as taking on a more active role if you have the time to do so.
Dignity Champions include health and social care managers and frontline staff. They also include doctors, nurses, dieticians, porters, MPs, councillors, members of local action groups and Local Involvement Networks (LINks), and people from voluntary and advocacy organisations. People who use care services, their relatives and carers, as well as members of the public, are becoming Dignity Champions."


On that note I shall finish off with a poem I have put on here before by Emily Dickinson. For me it captures the moment I would meet a new gentleman or lady who required our help.

This Quiet Dust was Gentlemen and Ladies

This quiet dust was gentlemen and ladies
And lads and girls;
Was laughter and ability and sighing,
And frocks and curls;

This passive place a summer's nimble mansion,
Where bloom and bees
Fulfilled their oriental circuit,
Then ceased like these.

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