The work of the local dementia support group has been acknowledged nationally in the first Dementia Friendly Awards scheme.
Dementia Support South Lincs, which represents more than 200 families living with dementia in the Bourne, Deepings and Stamford areas of south Lincolnshire received a Certificate of Recognition as one of four finalists in the voluntary organisations category of the awards scheme which is an initiative by the Alzheimer’s Society supported by Lloyds Bank Group and the Telegraph newspaper.
The certificate was presented at a ceremony in London chaired by Angela Rippon and attended by more than 250 people.
Awards were presented to individuals, community groups, schools and businesses, all of whom are working to improve the quality of life for people living with dementia and to raise awareness and understanding of the condition.
Heather Gilling, chairman of Dementia Support South Lincs said: “We were thrilled that the work we are doing in our small corner of Lincolnshire was acknowledged in this national arena. There are some fantastic projects underway in various parts of the country to help those who are living with dementia and we felt privileged and humbled that our work was considered to be in that same league.”
Mrs Gilling, who was accompanied at the presentation by Kate Marshall, Dementia Support South Lincs’ memory health care worker, and Francis Addlesee, one of the group’s younger members with dementia, added that a number of the projects offered “food for thought” in being adapted for South Lincolnshire, particularly as Bourne is now formally on a journey to become a dementia friendly community – the first in Lincolnshire.
The formal launch took place during Dementia Awareness Week as part of the annual general meeting of Dementia Support South Lincs which welcomed Karishma Chandaria, Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friendly Communities Manager as its guest speaker.
Addressing an audience of around 100 people, Mrs Chandaria explained how the initiative strives to help people with dementia to continue to live as independently as possible and to receive understanding and support when they need it.
This, she said, could be achieved in simple and practical ways, for example by being patient if a person with dementia is struggling to find the right money to pay for purchases in a local shop. “Small actions can make a huge difference to someone living with dementia” she said “and it doesn’t involve spending lots of money.”
Dementia Friendly Communities is an Alzheimer’s Society initiative and a key aspect of the Prime Minister’s Dementia Challenge, encouraging everyone from local shops to bus companies to commit to an action to help make a positive difference to people living with dementia.
The launch of Bourne as a dementia friendly community is supported by the South Lincolnshire Dementia Action Alliance.
Dementia Action Alliance is a national movement of organisations from all walks of life who are working together to make positive differences to help improve the quality of life for people with dementia and their families and carers.
It is hoped that Stamford and the Deepings will also be launched as Dementia Friendly Communities soon.
For more information about Dementia Friendly Communities, or becoming a member of South Lincolnshire Dementia Action Alliance, contact Heather Gilling, Chairman, Dementia Support South Lincs, tel 01778 342421 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about the services and activities offered by Dementia Support South Lincs contact Kate Marshall, tel 01778 440153 or e-mail email@example.com