New business to provide a little TLC for elderly

A local businesswoman has channelled her experiences of caring for her father into a new company supporting older people.

Sunday, 15th September 2019, 11:58 am
Jayne Allison holding a picture of her and dad Frank Blackburn before he died last year

Jayne Allison has set up Eldercircle after struggling to find the right kind of help for her dad Frank Blackburn before he died last year aged 69.

She has now formed the new company which is specifically aimed at people who were successful professionals in their careers and whose children are juggling caring for parents with full-time work themselves.

The company will offer services such as help cooking, cleaning, shopping and attending appointments but is unable to provide medical care or assist with taking medication.

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Jayne said: “My dad needed some support. All his life he had lived independently and then suddenly needed help with basic tasks.

“We were looking for services and it just wasn’t great. What was on offer wasn’t what we wanted at that time.

“We didn’t need personal care at that stage, we just needed help with the basics.

“My dad was a professional man and he was quite proud, he didn’t want people coming in to help him. Eventually he allowed me and my two sisters to do it.

“I also want to change the perception of people coming in to help and the language of caregiving. We’re calling it a personal assistant service, supporting them.

“It’s alright to have a cleaner or a dog walker but people don’t seem to think having someone popping in to see mum and dad is ok in the same way.”

As well as tasks around the home Eldercircle’s team will help clients visit social events and will provide companionship and welfare checks while families are on holiday.

Jayne will be running Eldercircle from her home in Leigh and those who have come on board to offer the service are mainly based around Leigh and surrounding areas such as Atherton.

However, she is hoping to offer a borough-wide service and then franchise Eldercircle to spread its services further afield.

Jayne has set up her new venture following almost 20 years working in social housing for the large organisation now called Jigsaw Homes.

She also hopes it will make things easier for families whose older members are ill and enable them to have better relationships.

She said: “It will mean children can spend much more quality time with them and make visiting more special.

“I remember when dad was ill our life for months consisted of just cleaning and cooking for him. We didn’t get to go anywhere together.”

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