St Luke’s is about living and creating as many wonderful, lasting memories as possible. Our Community Nursing Team visit patients all over Sheffield every day – Christmas Day is no exception. We will be there for the patients who need our support the most and to make this Christmas the best it possibly can be – a day to remember.
A typical patient visit over Christmas will last an hour to check everything is physically and emotionally stable and administer the right medication to stop a ‘crisis’ from happening on an already busy, emotional day.
Could you pay for a Community Nursing visits over Christmas this year?
£27.60 could enable a patient to be supported by our specialist Community Nursing team for an hour on Christmas Day.
£48.78 could ensure a nurse can deliver two hours’ care for a patient in our In Patient Centre.
£220.79 is the amount it costs St Luke’s to deliver 8 hours’ worth of specialist care to a patient in the comfort of their own home.
It’s important for patients and their loved ones to be together – and never more so than at this special time of year. Our care makes that possible for thousands of people every year.
My family has lived in Sheffield for decades and we live just close to St Luke’s but in terms of what they did, we didn’t realise until my Mum, Maya, was diagnosed with bile-duct cancer just before Christmas in December 2015.
The first week after she’d been diagnosed was very scary for us. But I remember the St Luke’s nurse coming over, sitting on the sofa with Mum like she was her friend. They spoke to her about what would happen, what to expect – but not in medical terms. They also invited her along to visit the Therapies and Rehabilitation centre every Monday, mentioning they had a salon. Mum was a big fan of spa days so that pricked her ears up; we told her to just go along – see what it was all about.
I know everyone says this about their Mum, but she was such a warm person – she was everybody’s friend. The most loving Mum you could imagine. You only had to wish it or say it – and she would make it happen.
Being able to speak to people, to take her mind off things – even for a little while – was invaluable. Every Monday at St Luke’s, she’d get the chance to talk to other patients and just do different things. She used to come back a different person – with a massive smile on her face, her shoulders back, like she’d had a few stone lifted off her weight.
One day she came back with a purple and white tie-dyed scarf; she was so proud of it; she gave it to dad for his birthday. It was seven months from diagnosis until Mum’s death. But it was the best seven months she could have given us. I think a lot of that came from St Luke’s – getting that reassurance; she always had an uplifted spirit, but she learned from the other patients to live every day, enjoy every day.
After Mum died, we remembered how special it had been for her to make that scarf. It’s just a scarf, but because of the way she felt about it, we love it too. You simply can’t put a value on it.
I hope you and your loved ones have a lovely Christmas, please cherish your special time together.
Read more supporter stories below
It's hard sometimes, thinking about the time you have left –
especially with Christmas coming.
Normally at Christmas, my mum comes for her lunch – we all get together as a family at my house; mum does most of the cooking. We do presents early in the morning. I have a traditional tree with lights, tinsel; every bauble on my tree is glass – they’re not what I call cheap-o’s!
The doctors and nurses at St Luke’s are just phenomenal; they’ve given me a lot more confidence to go home and be independent. It’s wonderful. I know St Luke’s will do everything they can to get me home for Christmas – simple as that.
Some people think St Luke’s is a place that you go to die; but I think St Luke’s is a place you go when you want to live.
I’ve had a run of bad luck – with prostate and tongue cancer but the one thing that struck me, when I went to St Luke’s for the first time, was that everyone cared – like no other place I’ve come across.
Each week I can visit the Therapies and Rehabilitations unit for a massage; having my feet massaged helps enormously – it relaxes me and eliminates the nausea from my cancer. I always come out feeling so much better – a normal human being again. And I think that’s the message of St Luke’s – to help you to be positive – to continue, to help you to help yourself. I live alone, but I won’t be alone this Christmas – they’re always there for me when I need them the most.
My husband Bob was a family man and loved everything about Christmas – carol concerts, baking the Christmas cake (which he always did), taking our grandchildren to the Christingle Service, cooking Christmas dinner.
After he died, two years ago, it was my first Christmas without Bob in 45 years. It was bittersweet – even though the family was together I missed sharing happy moments with him, especially with our grandchildren, as he loved spending time with them.
St Luke's, were very supportive throughout that time, always listening to what I was struggling with and letting me come through it at my own pace. Though the family supported one another it was so helpful to talk to someone who wasn’t involved in our sadness; it means you can ‘let go’ a bit more.
Bob will always be with us in our memories; but wearing things like the earrings in my photo, a gift for our 30th wedding anniversary, is one way I remind myself of what he meant to me – a precious jewel of a person, my soulmate and best friend.
In the weeks leading up to Christmas, we’re extremely busy at St Luke's. It means the world to a family if we can get their loved one home – even if just for a few hours.
Last year, we looked after an amazing young man. There’s a wonderful photo of him, with his wife and two young boys – all in Christmas jumpers. It’s moments like that I’ll never forget. That’s what makes Christmas at St Luke’s so important – knowing we’ve helped families to have this time together; it’s the little things that make all the difference.