Every year St Elizabeth Hospice delivers free care to over 3,000 patients and their families throughout East Suffolk, Great Yarmouth and Waveney.
Centered on an individual’s needs, the hospice provides specialist support, whenever and wherever it is needed, whether at home, in the community or at the hospice.
One family who received support via the hospice’s services is the Joyes’ family. Miriam Joyes explains how her mother-in-law, Ann Joyes (pictured with her husband Ron Joyes), received support from St Elizabeth Hospice’s community team in her own home in 2017, until her death at the age of 82-years-old in 2019.
“Ann had lived for many years with several lung conditions, including emphysema, but as her condition progressed she came under the care of St Elizabeth Hospice and the Macmillan teams”, said Miriam.
“She would regularly visit the Community Care Unit (formerly Day Care) services at St Elizabeth Hospice as well as receiving counselling support from the hospice. She was keen to be cared for at home and between the hospice and Macmillan teams, they ensured this was able to happen, with the clinical nurse specialists supporting Ann with pain management, providing an oxygen tank and a specialist bed to make her more comfortable.
“Ann was a private lady, but the care she received became a real lifeline and she had such faith in all the staff who supported her.”
Ron Joyes, Ann’s husband, added: “The service Ann and our family received was very personable. They took the time to talk and to listen to Ann, about her health and her life in general.
“They became like family friends she could confide in, which was so valuable and allowed her to live well with her condition. It was a real holistic service and one that was calming and reassuring during difficult times in our lives.”
A former primary school teacher, Ann was a creative person, who spent her spare time writing and illustrating her own stories for the children she taught.
After her death, Ron decided to publish the family’s favourite story by Ann, Jimmy Bean and the Hair Wash, in her memory. In February 2020, Ron had the book published in dedication to Ann with all money raised by book sales going to St Elizabeth Hospice and the British Lung Foundation as a ‘thank you’ for their support.
“All the children loved to hear Ann read and they loved hearing the tale of Jimmy Bean,” added Ron.
“I am so pleased the book has been published. It makes me feel very emotional, but it helps keep Ann’s memory alive and her stories can be enjoyed by children for years to come.
“She was such a creative person, always writing, drawing, sewing or painting and all the illustrations in the book are by Ann too.
“Ann was a really wonderful person, her last few years were difficult, but the hospice made them as good as they could be. We cannot thank them enough, but hopefully the proceeds raised by the book help the hospice support others who need their care.”
To purchase Jimmy Bean and the Hair Wash visit www.waterstones.com/book/jimmy-bean-and-the-hair-wash/ann-joyes/9781913179441 or www.amazon.co.uk/Jimmy-Bean-Hair-Wash-Joyes/dp/1913179443.