As part of Dementia Action Week that took place 20 - 26 May, Diana Wilson our Housing Support and Wellbeing Services Advisor tells us the importance of the awareness of Dementia
“For a start one person develops dementia every 3 minutes in the UK. At present there is no cure.
Many people living with dementia live on their own, without the proper support they need and feel excluded from society.
Being a dementia friends champion on behalf of the Alzhemier’s Society means I can deliver sessions to inspire people to take action to support people affected by dementia in their community. So far I have made 352 work colleagues, customers, students and general public become dementia friends and my target this year is to reach 500.
Dementia Awareness Week began at Aspire Housing with a dementia friends session for customers at Gordon Court community living scheme on Monday 20th May. Many of the customers had family or friends living with dementia and contributed many of their personal experiences yesterday at the group meeting.
The question most asked was ‘what is the difference between dementia and Alzheimer’s disease’ ? Dementia is the umbrella term to describe a set of symptoms which include memory loss, mood changes and problems with communication and reasoning and there are over 100 types of dementia including vascular dementia, dementia with lewy bodies and fronto-temporal dementia. Early diagnosis means the correct support can be put in place to ensure that people can continue to live well and do the things that matter to them most. We also held two public dementia friends sessions taking place at Earl’s Court community hall.”
Diana continues “ When you become a dementia friend, you will go away from the session having learnt 5 key messages. You will be asked to make a pledge about what action you will do to make a difference to supporting people living with dementia. It could be becoming a volunteer or wearing your badge and telling others about the Dementia Friends initiative.
To spread the message even further, becoming a dementia champion would be a next step and to find out how to become one, simply go on to the Alzheimers Society dementia friends website and be guided to where the nearest champion induction is taking place for you to attend.
If you are interested in more information The Alzheimers Society provide expert information and support. If you would like to talk to someone for information, support or advice, call the National Dementia Helpline on 0300 222 1122.
You can sign up to Talking Point, the online community for anyone affected by dementia. This is open 24 hours daily. alzheimers.org.uk/talkingpoint
To find services local to you for people affected by dementia go to alzheimers.org.uk/getsupport
Any other enquiries please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 0330 333 0804.