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Helping build a dementia friendly community

11/05/2017

"I found 'Still Alice' by Lisa Genova a real insight into how it feels and it took some fears away for me. I recommended it to my GP and she found it really useful. Myself, somedays on a bad day my head feels as if its full of concrete, sometimes ricepudding! My GP loves my descriptions "

We also love this description of what it feels like to have dementia, posted by someone living with dementia on an Alzheimer's Society online forum. Next week is Dementia Awareness week, so we thought it was a good time to update you on some of the work we have been doing to improve services for people with dementia. 

We are involved the Dementia Action Alliance, who bring together organisations across England to improve the lives of people with dementia and their carers. As part of this, Kate Hales, our Dementia Champion, offers Dementia Friends sessions to local people.  

In the last year, Kate has made 504 new Dementia Friends. She has talked to lots of different types of groups, including private and public sector organisations, the police, a local deaf group, primary school children and young people (16-19).

Kate's sessions tend to be activity based, which the younger school children particularly love! She includes activities like hanging clothes on a washing line and talking about what order we put things on when we get dressed. This activity focuses on how we use different parts of our brain to complete everyday tasks. People with dementia may find these tasks more difficult, especially the sequencing of getting dressed in the morning.  

Kate tailors her sessions to suit the various groups she is speaking to. For the deaf group Kate visited, there was a British Sign Language (BSL) Interpreter to translate what Kate talked about. Kate and the BSL interpreter found that the dementia language was quite complex and hard to sign. 

"We all really found it informative and loved your delivery" - Carole, Cambridgeshire County Council

Some of the pledges that the primary school children have made

Dementia Friends session promises from local primary school
 
 

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