Shane Green of the Stoma Heroes charity explains what made him set up the group that regularly meets at the Crispin Centre in Street:
In 2017 I had two lifesaving operations due to perforation of the bowel. When I awoke from the first procedure I had an ileostomy (stoma). I had no preparation for life with a stoma and, at that time, felt quite self-conscious and lonely.
Having recovered from my procedure, and my new life with a stoma, I made a decision to reach out to others in my situation with the intention of starting a social/help group. I gained access to other people in my position and, as a result, now have around 15 members who meet once a month, currently at the Crispin Centre in Street. It is a light-hearted group and not all members will turn up every month so we have around 6 to 10 people at any one time comparing experiences. This has proved helpful to me and my new friends, normalising the life we now live. I am expecting an increase in numbers as we go forwards.
Occasionally we have a stoma nurse attending meetings which has proved invaluable for those who may need help or product advice.
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