A Yorkshire farmer, who would prefer to stay anonymous, has donated £10,000 to R.A.B.I to say thank you for the help he received 14 years ago when he was rushed into hospital with a ruptured bowel and septicaemia. His condition was so serious he was off work for two years. Here, he tells his story.
“I was a self-employed farmer, working alongside my father who was 75. I hadn’t really been ill but through the weekend I didn’t feel well and it got worse and worse. I had spraying to do and carried on, but eventually it ended with an ambulance coming and me waking up in hospital, having had a colostomy, wondering how we were ever going to manage.
“Coincidentally, my sister, who lives in Powys, went to the Royal Welsh Show and it was pelting down. She took shelter in the R.A.B.I tent and began talking about my situation. John Basnett (R.A.B.I welfare officer, pictured below) came out to see me and I got a monthly allowance of £800 for 12 months – I can’t tell you how important that money was to us.
“Now, I’m in a position to give something back to R.A.B.I. Being off work for so long forced us to make some radical changes and we sorted ourselves out. R.A.B.I gave us that chance. The help we received allowed me, my wife and mum and dad to make adjustments.
“I’m in my 60’s now and although I’ve still got the farm I’ve effectively retired. My dad is 92 and in a nursing home – but whenever I go and see him I ask him what he wants to do and he says ‘come home and go to work’.
“If my sister hadn’t gone to the Royal Welsh Show that day – and if it hadn’t been raining – I’m not sure what we would have done.”