Like all our dedicated Association Visitors (AVs), Colin lends a listening ear to families affected by MND. Colin is particularly well placed to offer support as he has first hand experience of the challenges they face as he is living with the disease.
Colin was diagnosed with MND five years ago. He was contacted by Alistair, the Chair of his local branch, to ask if he needed help and if he wished to join the branch. Two years on, Colin is now volunteering as an AV and as Branch Contact.
"It was Alistair's suggestion that I do the MND Association's AV training course. I didn't think twice about it, though some parts of the training were very tough emotionally."
Colin's contact is via email, text and phone. "It's easier for many people that way. A lot of people with MND have all kinds of people coming to the house. Sometimes it's much easier to answer the phone or pick up an email at a time when it suits.
"You have to offer the type of support people want. One man I used to email never mentioned his MND at at all, we used to talk about cricket matches. Occasionally, if he was down, I would be able to lift his spirits by reminding of an important game that was coming up. Sometimes a couple of texts is all it takes to turn someone's day into a better one."
Colin is determined to keep busy as an AV and as Branch Contact for as long as possible. "Everyone has down days, that's normal whether you have MND or not. I'd like to think that being an AV gives me a little more insight into what people are going through. If I can make a difference, however small, I'm happy."