A FAMILY has praised a home builder after experiencing a stay at the new “Donor Flat” which offers highly discounted stays at a highly stressful time.
The NHS Lothian initiative was launched in partnership with the City of Edinburgh Council and CALA Homes in September to provide a base close to the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary for families supporting an organ donor or recipient.
Previously families were often forced to find last minute, often expensive accommodation for an uncertain time period.
The home is now fully furnished with ultra-high-end showhome furniture donated direct from CALA Homes, along with a fully fitted kitchen – a contribution worth more than £15,000.
Thanks to this initiative, John Mackie from Aberdeenshire was able to access affordable accommodation when his partner Catherine Stuart donated an organ to her brother Ian Robertson at the Royal Infirmary in Edinburgh.
John Mackie said: “Having access to the transplant flat in Edinburgh was a real godsend during this time as it took the pressure off of having to find affordable accommodation.
“To be able to have somewhere so close to the hospital was great, it meant that we were just a short walk over to visit Catherine whenever but still had a place to go in between visiting hours.”
After securing the lease for the transplant flat Sylvia Baikie, Public Health Practitioner at NHS Lothian, reached out to CALA Homes (East) to see if any spare furniture could be donated in order to make the flat feel more like a home.
Going above and beyond Sylvia’s request, CALA decided to not only provide furniture from its own showhomes, but also to fit a kitchen and flooring using contractors Kelvin and AFG, who CALA frequently work with throughout its developments.
John continued: “The flat was absolutely perfect, it had everything we needed and it was so well furnished, we really felt comfortable there.
“Having the flat meant that Catherine didn’t need to worry about where I was going to be, she could just focus on her recovery which was the most important thing.
“There’s no doubt that this flat will help so many people in need during a difficult time.”
Philip Hogg, Sales and Marketing Director at CALA Homes (East) said: “We are thrilled to have been able to help families like John and Catherine’s by fully renovating the donor flat for NHS Lothian.
“This project helps people in their time of need. For a family like Catherine’s going through something like an organ donation, to have to try and find short term accommodation at a time like this could be very difficult, adding undue stress.
“At CALA, we know that we can bring comfort and luxury – so to be able to offer this to families going through a challenging time really means a lot to us. We hope that this flat will be able to provide people with a secure, comfortable place to feel relaxed and at home.
“We wish Catherine and Ian a speedy recovery and are so glad to have been able to have helped during their time of need.”
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