Join the 20,000 people across Somerset who are already Dementia Friends – or encourage local communities to become ‘dementia friendly’ – and improve lives this Dementia Action Week (20-26 May).
With over 9,000 people in Somerset estimated to have dementia and around 6,500 people caring for someone with dementia; most people know someone affected.
Having dementia shouldn’t mean an isolated life. People living with dementia often report feeling cut off from their community, losing friendships and facing dementia alone.
Dementia Friends learn more about dementia to help understand what it is like to be affected and help increase awareness and understanding so that people can continue to live in the way they want.
Anyone can become a Dementia Friend. To find out more, visit www.dementiafriends.org.uk and sign up.
21 towns in Somerset are dementia friendly communities or have formed Dementia Action Alliances – or are about to. Made up of individuals who are carers, people who work in health and social care, public services, businesses, charities and individuals who really want to make a difference to the lives of local people affected by dementia in their local community.
Dementia friendly communities can be set up at any level in a village or town, it means coming together and thinking more about how to make things better for people with dementia.
Trudi Grant, Director of Public Health at Somerset County Council said: “During Dementia Action Week, we continue to strive to make Somerset a dementia-friendly place to live. We can all take simple steps to help others that add up to making a big difference overall. A day out shopping in Somerset with a ‘dementia friendly’ bus driver, a visit to the bank, supermarket or hairdresser, all treating a person with dementia with understanding, patience and tolerance is the difference between people with dementia living the life they want or feeling confined at home.”
Events and activities are happening around the County during Dementia Action Week. These include the Alzheimer’s Society Roadshow in Taunton and Castle Cary, information stands at Musgrove Park Hospital and Yeovil District Hospital, activities in Wellington organised by Reminiscence Learning and Glastonbury Dementia Action Alliance events.
All these events would really welcome seeing as many people as possible, if its just to lend your support, find out more about dementia or enquire what you and your community can do to become more dementia friendly.
For further information and advice about dementia, contact the Alzheimer’s Society in Somerset on 01458 251541 or http://www.alzheimers.org.uk.