Meet our Ambassador, Chris!
Chris has been using the Respond service for one year now, so we decided to sit down with him and talk about why he joined the stoma, and how it feels like one big family.
Tell us about yourself
Hi, I’m Chris Turner. I’m from Bedfordshire. I’m almost fourty-seven years old and I Iive with my wife, Rachel. I’ve got two kids and four cats. I’ve had my stoma nearly five years now. The reason I had to have my stoma was because of Crohn’s disease and it just caused too many problems. So, in the end, I said to the surgical team “enough is enough, take it out and give me a stoma.”
What do you think makes a great service?
For me, great service is about personal care. It’s about really understanding the person, not just trying to sell your product or trying to show good customer service because you think you have to. It’s about making people feel valued and feel like they’re worthy. If someone shows me that level of care, I buy into that all day long, because that’s what I want and that’s how I treat people, so I expect it if I’m dealing with any business.
How long have you been using the Respond service?
About a year. Before that, I was using another service provider, and they were okay. But they didn’t have that care element to put thought into you and help find the right products for you. So, that’s when I contacted Respond and I joined the service after one phone call.
What is it about the Respond service that you like?
The care. It’s just speaking to someone and not feeling like they’re reading a script. The team genuinely listen to everything you’ve got to say. Nothing feels rushed. I feel like I could talk on the phone to them for hours because they’re just so open!
What would you say to someone who was looking to change their service?
If someone’s looking to change their service, they must have their reasons as to why they’d want to do that. So, I’d likely ask a few questions to find out more, but I would say to ring Respond and have that one phone call. Whenever people ask me who I use straightaway I say, “just phone Respond and I can guarantee you you’ll want to join.”
Every person I’ve spoken to has always said the same thing about Respond. The team have always been super caring and super kind and can’t do enough for you. And that’s everything I want.
What three words would you use to describe Respond?
It’s the thoughtfulness, the kindness and the care. By far the three best words for Respond. I think thoughtfulness comes into it a lot because you can almost hear them on the phone, trying to think of ways to help you and it’s that thought process that I really appreciate.
What does it mean to you to be a part of the Respond ambassador programme and family?
It means everything to me. When I had my stoma five years ago, I never thought I’d be working with Respond. To find myself sitting here, being interviewed – I never expected it. But I know it’s going to help other people and that’s exactly why I’m doing it. If people can watch something that I do – this interview or anything else that I do – and it helps, then that’s fantastic.
I was telling my wife this morning “they are one big family” and everyone that I’ve seen is so caring and happy to share their stories. Recently, as part of the ambassador programme, we had a tour around the Pelican Healthcare factory and that was incredible. It shows both Pelican and Respond Healthcare are trying to help people with stomas. It’s fantastic.
Tell us 3 things that we don’t know about you?
I’ve got four cats called Luna, Stella, Ziggy & Loki. I also review all different types of beers as well, from around the world, and have my own channel. Third thing…I’m struggling now…. I love pickled onion Monster Munch!