Dementia has been brought into the headlines recently following the Oscar success of film ‘Still Alice’ and the sad passing of author Terry Pratchett. It is an illness that affects more than 800,000 Britons and the number of sufferers worldwide is predicted to treble to 44 million by 2050 as the population ages. With no cure available David Cameron has described the condition as ‘the key health challenge of this generation.’
The Prime Minister has set a ‘Dementia Challenge’ to make improvements in dementia care and research. The aim is to develop ‘dementia friendly’ communities across the country. Funding has been secured to appoint Dementia Action Alliance Co-ordinators through the Alzheimer’s Society and they will be assisting communities in Dorset to become dementia friendly. Christchurch has been chosen to be a leader in this new development, helping to improve the lives of people living with dementia and their carers. People from local businesses, civic organisations, rescue services, faith groups and health and social care providers will be involved in the Alliance.
A project steering group has been formed representing the local community in order to move the project forward. The Christchurch Dementia Action Alliance Change Group (Christchurch DAA) meets at least quarterly and holds themed working groups to deliver specific activities. There are a number of projects being undertaken which include:
- Raising the awareness of dementia in Christchurch
- Listening to people living with dementia and their carers
- Dementia friendly GP surgeries
- Looking at best practice in other areas to learn from other communities
- Develop a ‘safe haven’ concept and create trust for ‘staying safe’ in Christchurch for businesses, organisations and people living with dementia and their carers
- Dementia friendly tourism – creating a dementia friendly tourist town.
Frettens are delighted to be recognised as ‘Dementia Friends’ and would recommend that if you would like further information that you visit the website www.dementiafriends.org.uk where this is a wealth of information about the initiative.
We have offices in Christchurch and the New Forest. Our Wills & Taxteam also cover Bournemouth and Poole. For a free initial chat, please call 01202 499255 and a member of the team will be happy to discuss any questions that you may have.