Margaret’s Story

72-year-old Margaret started using LifeCare’s Outreach services four years ago. Born and bred in the Leith area of Edinburgh, Margaret met the love of her life, Ernie, as a young woman on a night out at the old Eldorado wrestling ring on Mill Lane. The couple married soon after, with Ernie working as a milkman delivering milk to the local community in an old milk cart, and Margaret working in the whisky bonds as a bottle washer, preparing the bottles before they were filled for selling. Margaret then went on to work in Kemps Middlemass biscuit factory on Easter Road, before retiring from work completely and pursuing her passion for art through a course at Telford College in Granton.  

In between retiring and starting her course, Margaret’s beloved husband Ernie sadly passed away. After losing Ernie, Margaret struggled. When she wasn’t at college, she was spending long hours riding on the bus just to keep warm and wasn’t eating properly or washing her clothes. The college grew concerned and contacted social work. Initially, Margaret got support through the City of Edinburgh Council. Margaret’s Council Care Coordinator reached out to LifeCare’s Outreach services to explore getting Margaret some vital, additional support.  

LifeCare’s Outreach team provides flexible, tailored support at home, or out and above, so clients can continue to live well and do the things that they enjoy. It was at this point that Margaret’s life started to turn around. Margaret gets care every week-day morning, and has had the same care worker, Nikki, for several years. This consistency and relationship-based approach is one of the things that makes LifeCare unique, and is especially important to Margaret, who finds change difficult. Nikki helps Margaret with her shower, ensuring she gets a hot cooked breakfast and provides general care and companionship. Nikki has also arranged for Margaret to get a monthly pamper, with a lady visiting Margaret at home once a month to give her a pedicure. Once a week, Margaret also gets support from carer Kenneth, with the pair getting out and about shopping to places like Cameron Toll and the Gyle, and to get her nails done. 

Margaret’s care worker, Nikki said: “LifeCare is great because it gives you the chance to build relationships. I’ve worked other places and it’s very much ‘drop in and go’, but with LifeCare we spend time with the client and really get to know them.”

When asked about the difference LifeCare has made to her life, Margaret said: “They’ve helped me alright. If it wasn’t for Outreach, I would be in the house all the time.”  

Margaret appreciates the support she receives from LifeCare to the extent that she has left the charity a gift in her will.