Some words from Anna Lydford and Adam Cole, daughter and son of Robin Cole MBE who inspired me.
Shelley worked with my father until his recent death. When he was well she was a wonderful companion and personal assistant, helping him with administrative jobs, taking him on outings and sharing his passions. She had amazing energy and could adapt to pretty much any situation and bring enjoyment to the most unlikely activity – with Pa she shared a passion for nature but also learned about engineering and flying; I’m sure that she could embrace just about any interest.
As Pa got older her role changed, she became more responsible for his physical and mental wellbeing, and showed amazing empathy, professionalism and patience. She became one of the family and supported not only Pa but also my brother and I through difficult times.
Quite simply Shelley made a huge contribution to Pa’s quality of life, and became a great friend to all the family, driving him to meet with family for Sunday lunches and celebrations. We were very lucky to stumble across her and would wholeheartedly recommend her to any other family in a similar stage of life. If you would like a further reference, please get my telephone number from Shelley and call me.
I can only add to my sister Anna’s enthusiastic testimonial as to Shelley Skinner’s capabilities. She did a brilliant job for our father, over a long period, occasionally under difficult circumstances. Her care extended to the whole family. She’s very intelligent, reads delicate situations well, and combines real care, patience and empathy with being a great “motivator”. She was always finding ways to really encourage Robin to get the most out of life, when on occasion he would have much rather have given up. She’s not frightened of a challenge! We can’t recommend her highly enough.
Words from Elsie’s daughter
We met Shelley some years ago and chanced to invite her to lunch when my elderly mum was here. They struck up an immediate bond, and we, and Mum, never looked back. She has amazing empathy with just about anyone, managing to find the positive side of any situation. She started visiting Mum, having tea with her, playing cards, taking her shopping, to the theatre and for walks. As Mums health deteriorated, she became a tremendous support to me as well. We were able to get away for breaks knowing that Shelley would ‘hold the fort’. We were away once when Mum took ill, and Shelley slept the night on Mums couch so she wouldn’t be alone or afraid. She brought such bright sunshine to Mums last years and for that I shall be eternally grateful. She enhanced her deteriorating quality of life beyond anything I could ever have hoped for.
We wish her well in her choosing to change her career path. I am happy to talk to anyone, if they so wish – Shelley has my number.
Son of client in North London
I can confirm that I have known Shelley since April 2016 when she became a live-in carer for my mother who has a progressive dementia. Shelley has been a close friend of a cousin for many years who recommended her to us, which is how we were lucky to be able to recruit her. Shelley is an excellent and competent carer and we were very disappointed when she decided to leave.
Shelley is wholly reliable. In her year with us she never once let us down. She is consistent and flexible.
There have been no issues at all with Shelley’s trustworthiness. She speaks frankly and fairly and we respected her for this attribute. Shelley has a strong Christian ethic.
Shelley was very caring and patient with my mother. She understood my mother’s condition and had realistic expectations as to what could be achieved. My mother got on very well with Shelley but sometimes tested her patience. Shelley responded to this test admirably, as far as I know she never lost her temper or became agitated.
Shelley communicated with my mother in an appropriate way without infantilising her. She encouraged my mother to participate and engage and was respectfully assertive when necessary. Shelley communicated with my mother’s family very well. She was respectful and not deferential: able to speak her mind and advocate on my mother’s behalf when necessary. Shelley completed written notes of daily activities and regularly maintained my mother’s care plan. She maintained a very high standard of recording.
I would highly recommend Shelley as a carer.
If you need to know any more about Shelley feel free to contact me.