A life changing home

Date: 07/07/2021

Last year we built 10 bungalows on the derelict Swallows Nest pub in Newstead. Two of these bungalows were specially designed for families supported by the Donna Louise Trust.

Emma and daughters Violet and Ivy; who has hypoplastic left heart syndrome (or a special heart as Ivy calls it) moved in last April. They had been living in a home that no longer met their needs and after a separation, Emma was living in her friends spare room with Violet and Ivy.

"My friends house only had a bathroom upstairs so we were having to carry Ivy upstairs which was becoming impossible as she grew older. It was also really frustrating for Ivy who couldn’t get to her bedroom without having to ask for help. We did try to adapt the house but the hallway was too small for a stairlift and an extension would’ve taken years to complete”

Emma joined the local council housing list but struggled to find a home that fitted their needs. Four months later the Donna Louise Trust, who have supported Emma and Ivy, got in touch to ask if they would like to view a Staffs Housing home. Each home has a larger bedroom with space for medical equipment and direct access to a wet room. The entrance hall and doorways are also wide enough for wheelchair use, with a level access garden too.

“My first thought was wow these look really good! We loved the idea of the wet room and the three bedrooms were a great size. It had been built really well for a wheelchair user.”

Now almost 12 months later, Emma, Violet and Ivy have settled into their new place and are proud to call it home.

“My children absolutely love it here. I no longer have to worry about Ivy falling on the stairs or having an accident. It’s not only been amazing for her physical health but her mental health too. She can get around wherever she needs to and doesn’t have to rely on others. She is completely independent which was so important to me as she grew older.”

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