On Monday 27th February, we hosted a well attended 'Dementia Awareness' session, led by Jack, a friend of our own Gina Shaw, a church warden at St Bride's for many years.
It was lovely to see her again - her Dementia Awareness campaigning has made her a celebrity but she's still the same Gina!
The session had five key messages:
- Dementia is not a natural part of ageing. It only happens to a minority of people and many in very old age retain sharp minds. Sometimes, sadly, dementia strikes the young.
- Dementia is caused by diseases of the brain. There are about a hundred of these of which Alzheimer's is best known.
- Dementia is not just about your memory - it can affect thinking, communicating and doing everyday tasks.
- It's possible to live well with dementia. Typically this needs sympathetic support, but it can be achieved.
- There's more to a person than the dementia. Their whole history, the things they can still connect with or be moved by. See the whole person.
At the end we were given our 'Dementia Friend' badges and encouraged to go out and take action to make a difference... by blogging for instance!