Life in a care home: meet our inspirational resident, Kim

Published on 23/03/2022

A care home resident who is at the end of her life has donated over £100 to a cause close to her heart.

A popular resident amongst staff and peers, Kim, 58, lives at L&Q Living’s Coxley House, a care home for adults with mental health needs in East London.

Kim is due to receive palliative care – but her terminal lung disease has not stopped her from helping others.

For over twenty years, she saved up any spare change leftover from her weekly food shops, stashing it away in her money tin for safe keeping.

Her savings kept on building week on week, and when Kim reached the £100 mark, she decided to donate her carefully saved coins to a worthwhile cause. Motivated by her own experience, she chose to donate the money to an organisation raising awareness about mental health.

After receiving the donation, Mind, the UK’s leading mental health charity, sent her a personal thank you message.

Shabanaz Begum, Coxley House Manager, said:

We are so proud of Kim. This incredible act of kindness is even more impressive when you consider what she is going through. To see the look of delight on her face when she watched the thank you video was amazing.”

Kim moved into Coxley House in August 2021, where she keeps herself busy by socialising with other residents and attending activities such as bingo, arts and crafts and jewellery making.

Her desire to give back first became apparent during a fundraising event for World Mental Health Day in October 2021. Raising money for ‘Together UK’, residents sold homemade jewellery boxes, Christmas cards and cupcakes to members of the public. Thanks to her creative prowess and unrivalled attention to detail, Kim’s creations were bestsellers on the day.

Shabanaz continues:

Kim loves art and contributing to the community, so this was the perfect event for her. A range of creative activities have become a natural part of daily life for all residents at Coxley House, but for no one more than Kim. Creating things has a healing effect on her – it takes her away from her reality and physical pain.”

Kim plans to continue her fundraising efforts right up until the end of her life – and the next cause she’s got in mind is mental health care in prisons.

“Her ability to think of others at a time of hardship is nothing short of inspirational. Despite the limited amount of time she has left, she is still supporting other residents, remains open to visits, and always has a smile on her face. Being confined to her home hasn’t held her back in the slightest - she really is an example to us all.”