Parkinson's UK Oxford Branch Parkinson's UK, our parent charity

July 2019

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First Steps to Salisbury (and back)

 Ian Sargent

Our friends in the Salisbury and District Branch held their annual Awareness Event on Saturday April 6th when Ian presented a talk about First Steps.

The Salisbury and District Branch of Parkinson’s UK held their annual Parkinson’s Awareness Event on April 6th. They were keen to learn more about the activities of our branch, and in particular the First Steps programme for newly diagnosed people which is not yet available in their area. Our Chairman Sally Bromley, who co-wrote the course, and I, as one of the hosts, were therefore invited to go along.

The meeting was held at Salisbury District Hospital and attended by about 80 people. I spoke about First Steps based on my personal experience, initially as a newly diagnosed person attending the course and later in my role as one of the hosts. I explained how the First Steps had helped me come to terms with my diagnosis in 2015 and take control of the condition, enabling me to make some important life decisions. Four years down the line those messages are still important and as a host I have found helping others to be a very rewarding experience. The talk generated a lot of interest and led to many questions for Sally and me.

Rolling forward two months to June, Diana Townsend and I were hosting a First Steps session at Witney Lakes. We were asking the participants where they came from and I was surprised and delighted to hear that one couple had come all the way from Salisbury having heard my presentation. The good news about First Steps is certainly spreading!

Could you help others as a First Steps facilitator?

Ian and Diana enjoy being First Steps facilitators, guiding newly diagnosed to understand you can have a good quality of life after diagnosis.

If you’ve experienced First Steps and would like to know more about becoming a facilitator, please contact Ian.

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