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Fresh Mud

A blog about living with FSH muscular dystrophy. Questions?

Post 36 of 45

Diversity of carers

Wednesday 21st September, 2022

Having received care in one form or another since 2006, I have met a wide variety of people. The majority have been female, and there have been a large variety of nationalities.

The three care agencies I had whilst I was still living in Kidderminster employed almost exclusively British staff, with the exception of one lady who was from Lithuania. (She made an amazing Russian honey cake!)

When I arrived at The Dean at the end of 2014, they used very little agency staff; I remember there being a permanent staff member from Hungary, and three agency carers who were all from Romania, but otherwise it was a British majority.

Fast forward seven years and the picture is very different. There are far fewer permanent staff and a lot more agency carers being used, and, for whatever reason, there is a much wider variety of nationalities. Regular agency carers come from a number of African countries including Ghana, Namibia, Kenya, Gambia, Nigeria, and Eritrea (which I’d never heard of until I meant that particular lady), and other countries including Nepal, Slovakia, Barbados, Jamaica, Brazil, and The Philippines.

It’s tremendously interesting to meet these people and to talk to them about their countries, and the journeys that brought them to the UK; more than a few have lived and worked in other countries, too. I like to imagine a map of the world with lines travelling from so many countries, all converging on Gloucester.

Most of them enjoy living here with the only complaints being the weather, naturally, and homesickness – one lady is going home soon for the first time in 13 years!

And for no reason other than my own interest, I have added a few of their country’s capital cities to my weather app; it’s nice to imagine what it’s like in all those different places. And chatting to and getting to know all these people, plus my daily game of Worldle, is slowly, very slowly, improving my geography.