Let’s make Plymouth dementia friendly with new dementia toolkit

Plymouth City Council and partners are working to make Plymouth a more dementia friendly place with the launch this week of a new Dementia Toolkit for local organisations. By 2015, it is predicted that 3,166 individuals in Plymouth will be living with dementia, rising to 3,667 by 2020. Two-thirds of people with dementia live independently within the community.

The Council will be providing copies of the toolkit to local organisations interested in making their members or employees more dementia aware. The toolkit is also available to download from the Plymouth City Council website. In addition, events are taking place in Plymouth throughout Dementia Awareness Week (18 to 24 May 2014) including a range of activities for people with dementia and their carers.

The toolkit is the latest move by Plymouth City Council to make Plymouth, in partnership with the Plymouth Dementia Action Alliance (PDAA), a more supportive and dementia friendly place to live. The Plymouth Dementia Action Alliance is open to organisations across the city interested in improving the experiences of customers and carers living with dementia. On 23 May 2014, the Local Government Association will be holding up Plymouth as an example of good practice in its dementia friendly work.

Carole Burgoyne, Strategic Director for People at Plymouth City Council, said: “Working to become a Dementia Friendly City is a key priority for Plymouth. We are immensely proud of the work the Council and other partners are doing to make Plymouth a better place to live for people with dementia, their families and carers. The launch of the toolkit is another great way to embed dementia awareness across Plymouth.”

Ian Sheriff, Plymouth University Academic Partnership Lead for Dementia, and the chair of the PDAA, said: “Dementia is one of the biggest challenges we face. With the Plymouth Dementia Action Alliance and our partners, we are working to not only provide better support but also to improve the awareness and understanding of the condition.”

In addition to the toolkit, other examples of dementia friendly work in Plymouth include:

  • Dementia Quality Mark – local care homes providing dementia services have to undergo an accreditation process to receive the DQM
  • Carers Emergency Response Service – the Council commissions The Human Support Group to provide care for loved ones where it’s needed most
  • Arts and Minds – Weekly arts workshops for people with dementia and their carers run at Plymouth City Museum and Gallery
  • Stoke Damerel Community College recently became one of 21 Dementia Pioneer Schools, embedding dementia education into as many subjects as possible where appropriate. They now aim to share this good practice with other city schools.
  • Dementia Champions – Plymouth City Council is encouraging its own staff and others outside the organisation to become Dementia Champions, and help raise awareness with their colleagues and other contacts outside the Council.
  • Dementia Support Worker – Plymouth City Council and The Alzheimer’s Society has recruited five dementia support workers to improve the support, information and coordination of services for people living with dementia in Plymouth.
  • Dementia Conference – In January 2014, Plymouth City Council and Plymouth University hosted a Conference on Dementia which had national and international speakers and was attended by 300 delegates.

More information on the national Dementia Friends campaign is available on theDementia Friends website.

You can also follow @DementiaFriends on Twitter and like their Facebook page.

More information on Plymouth Council’s dementia friendly work, including training opportunities, is available by emailing pdaa@plymouth.gov.uk or calling 01752 305519. You can download the toolkit from our dementia toolkit page.

Events during Dementia Awareness Week
(18 to 24 May 2014)

Events are taking place in Plymouth throughout Dementia Awareness Week supporting people to live well with dementia. The events are also open to carers.

Boccia! – Tuesday 20 May at 1pm at the Central Library Plymouth. Boccia is a Paralympic sport (similar to indoor bowls) and can be enjoyed by all. For more information and to book a place, contact Larisa Milden on 01752 201891 or email active@plymouthguild.org.uk

Guided walk – Wednesday 21 May at 1.15pm meeting at West Park Library. Free 30 minute guided walk along a flat route to explore this part of the city. For more information and to book, contact Larisa Milden on 01752 201891 or emailactive@plymouthguild.org.uk

Roman Holiday – Thursday 22 May at 11am at Plymouth Arts Centre. Special screening of Audrey Hepburn’s classic film Roman Holiday. For more information and to book contact the Box Office at Plymouth Arts Centre on 01752 206114.

Drop in events – For more information and support for dementia related issues staff from Plymouth Memory service and the Alzheimer’s Society will be available at Drakes Circus on Thursday 22 May or Plymstock Library on Friday 23 May.

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Sarah Gray, Plymouth City Council's Dementia Friendly Coordinator, launches the new Dementia Toolkit at Plympton Library with local partners.

Sarah Gray, Plymouth City Council’s Dementia Friendly Coordinator, launches the new Dementia Toolkit at Plympton Library with local partners.