Tommy Appleby, 89, joined Equal Arts sessions after caring for his wife Irene for 25 years.
“Equal Arts saved my life you know. I know it sounds dramatic, but it’s the truth. I was in a very bad way and felt very unlike meself. I was at rock bottom.
“I’d lost me wife one year previous. I was lost meself. I didn’t know where to go or what to do with meself. I did everything for her. I always put her first. When she died, I didn’t know what to do anymore. I only knew how to look after her. I’d never lived.
“But then I got in with Equal Arts and you’ve changed the way I see things. I’m never in now.
“My advice to people what’s low is to say ‘do a new interest, something that’ll challenge ya.’ I mean, I was lukewarm about the hens at first, but when I think back now, I’ve never regretted it. I never miss a session.
“I’ve made some great friends through HenPower. What I like about the HenPower is that you’re not entertained, you’re involved. You make decisions for yourself and you work as a group. I love to tell everyone how it’s changed my life, about how it’s changing older people’s lives.
“When Irene was ill, it was hard to think about getting to the end of the day, now I wonder what we’ll be doing all the time. I’m always off talking to people. It keeps your mind active.”
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