Little more than a decade ago, Neil Evans was a car salesman. He learnt about Julia’s House while selling a car to our Chief Executive Martin Edwards. Motivated by what he’d heard, he first joined Julia's House as a volunteer and from there made the life-changing decision to pursue his passion for nursing.
Neil is now a Senior Team Nurse in Wiltshire and says he’s still thankful for the opportunity to make a difference for the seriously ill children and families he cares for.
We asked Neil to share his week as a Julia’s House nurse.
A busy start to the week! We have our regular four-hour clinic, where we create medication administration charts, containing all the medications, for the children we’re caring for in Wiltshire.
I’m a named nurse for seven families and make around four community visits each week. This afternoon, I’m visiting one of my children in Amesbury – Isabella. She always gives us the biggest smile when we arrive and loves to play.
She’s on continuous oxygen to help her breathing and maintain her oxygen levels. Her medical condition causes her to have excess mucus in her lungs, which is why she requires support with her breathing. We check her oxygen levels when we arrive and observe her closely her throughout the session.
When the unthinkable happens and a child dies, we continue to support the family however they might need it. This morning I’m going for a walk with a local family. I was their child’s named nurse and it’s nice to share memories together.
"Building relationships with families and helping them to make memories is one of the things I love most about my job. Julia’s House is a special place to work and no week is really the same."
Neil Evans, Julia's House Senior Team Nurse
This afternoon, I’ll be fit-testing some of our nurses for their new PPE. We have around eight different types of masks, depending on the clinical level of the child.
This afternoon I’m meeting a new family who have been referred to us by Salisbury District Hospital. Every family is different, so we always take time to get to know them and their individual needs.
Today I’ll visit Johnathon, who is 11 and a ball of energy. He has CHARGE syndrome, which affects his heart and growth. We might play with action figures or bake something for his family.
Building relationships with families and helping them to make memories is one of the things I love most about my job. Julia’s House is a special place to work and no week is really the same.