Veteran’s Stories: A New Family at Woodys
Veterans of all ages visit us at Woody’s Lodge and they will often have varying backgrounds, from their own health challenges to caring for a loved one. Here at Woody’s Lodge, we approach the challenges our veterans, emergency services leavers and their families face in an environment that provides support, care and friendship. Find out more about one of our veterans that visits us, Ben, and his experience caring for himself and his wife.
Our Veterans: Ben
Ben* is 91 and served as RAF Ground Crew as Flight Engineer in the UK and overseas in the latter stages of WW2 and then served with the RAF for 30 years!
Ben’s wife has been diagnosed with dementia, over the last 5 years he had become her principal carer. His wife was his first girlfriend and they have been together for 70 years! Ben is also facing physical health problems and was recently diagnosed with cardiovascular disease, consequently his mobility and socialisation is impacted on. His wife has recently been taken into full-time hospital care and is awaiting a nursing home placement. Ben visits her every day and is now caring for himself.
Ben no longer drives and is dependant on taxis and buses to get around and visit his wife. Woodys now plays an important and central role in providing a much needed social point, which Ben refers to as “his club”. Woody’s is providing the crucial support for veterans of the armed forces and emergency service leavers that many forget is so important. Ben’s son has commented on how his father has changed for the positive and how he looks forward to coming to Woody’s Lodge to talk about his experiences in the RAF with other “senior” RAF veterans.
Woody’s free transport minibus picks Ben up and drops him off on Tuesdays and Thursdays where he spends on average 4 hours at Woody’s at Amelia Trust Farm where he enjoys walks around the farm.
He also enjoys his time in the minibus ‘as co-pilot’ and talks of his life and family to our Transport Officer, Kimberly.
“I see Woody’s as my second family and has been a lifeline during the difficult years of looking after my Diane, I love talking to my RAF colleagues and listening to other veteran’s experiences both young and senior.
*name has been changed
If you, or a veteran you know is struggling, here at Woody’s Lodge we can help. We can provide expert advice and support, as well like-minded people who have similar experiences to you. We are a Welsh Armed Forces charity with locations in North and South Wales; we can help with Housing & Support, Benefits, Pensions & Finance, Agency & NHS Referrals and Socialising & Friends. From one-to-one assistance with form-filling with a brew & a biscuit to Family Days and activities, our team are on-hand to ensure you receive the help and support that you need!