In 2010, Matt’s father, Bill, was diagnosed with lung cancer and was prescribed a course of chemotherapy. Following this and a brief period of apparent improvement, Bill was further diagnosed with a tumour on his brain for which he was advised to have radiotherapy.
At this time Bill was in Doha, staying with his daughter. As he became more poorly he was admitted to the local hospital, Matt and his Mum (Suzanne) flew out to be with him. But Bill did not improve and local Doctors were unwilling to permit him to travel home telling Bill and his family that there was nothing else they could do for him.
Bill did improve a little allowing him to travel home and to be at home in the love and care of his family. Sadly once home, Bill had a relapse and collapsed. The attending ambulance crew suggested that Bill and Suzanne think about some extra support, perhaps Beaumond House.
“Mum would have struggled looking after Dad for much longer, other family members tried to juggle work and family commitments but it was very hard and it became evident that it was not going to be possible for Dad to stay at home, where he really wanted to be. Most of all he didn’t want to go into hospital, he hated them so much, having had such bad past experiences it would have really upset him to have been admitted. We agreed that Dad should come to Beaumond House.”
Matt had never previously been into Beaumond House and admitted that he really did not know what to expect, other than perhaps a white, clinical, shiny interior with that awful ‘hospital’ smell.
“Coming into Beaumond House was like coming into someone’s home, the warmth and welcoming was nothing like I had expected. Dad was made so comfortable, he was happy to be at Beaumond House. We all felt that Dad was safe and treated with dignity while he was there, we were happy to leave him knowing his every need would be attended to. Whilst his condition was deteriorating rapidly we knew he was enjoying the dedicated attention the staff offered. We could come and go as we wanted and towards the end when we knew that Dad was ready to go, all the children were able to come in and say goodbye. The reassurance we felt in the care of Beaumond House meant that we could concentrate on spending time being with Dad rather than concerned about giving him the care he needed.
For our family the most important thing was that Dad was comfortable, our needs came second, but we felt our questions were always answered, everyone was fantastic and we were never left worrying about the care he was receiving. Dad couldn’t be at home, Mum just would not have been able to cope, but in Beaumond House he received the care, respect and attention that we all wanted for him.
My wife and I are not charity people, we are very sceptical about how many charities spend their income, but we both now want to do whatever we can to support Beaumond House, we won’t ever be able to repay Beaumond House for the love and care given to Dad, but we want to do whatever we can because we know that the money raised will go directly to looking after local people.”
In loving memory of William Morris.