Helping people live well with dementia
Posted on: 6 June 2017
Devon County Council has commissioned a dementia support worker service from the Alzheimer’s Society and agreed funding for a new Devon Memory Café Consortium, in moves that will develop support in local communities for people with dementia.
Around 14,200 Devon residents last year were estimated to have dementia, nearly 2 per cent of the population. The figure is set to rise to around 24,200 by 2036, affecting nearly 3 per cent of the population.
Devon County Council believes that enabling communities to be more resilient and able to respond to residents’ needs will help people with dementia live independently for as long as possible, without need for ongoing care.
The Council has a long history of working with the voluntary and community sector including the Alzheimer’s Society. The new contract means that Dementia Support Workers, which are highly valued by carers of people with dementia, will continue to work in local communities with individuals to support them.
Dementia Support Workers work in towns and villages across Devon, helping people with the condition, and their families, to identify and make use of services in their community that can help them.
The Council and the two Devon Clinical Commissioning Groups have also agreed funding, from the Better Care Fund, to support a new Devon Memory Café Consortium.
The Consortium works to support more than 50 memory cafes in Devon, with more to come.
Councillor Andrew Leadbetter, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for adult social care, said:
“We’re delighted to be working with the Alzheimer’s Society and the Memory Café Consortium to help build networks of support in local communities for people with dementia and their carers.
“More people are living well with dementia thanks to the support of local groups and organisations – many of them charities and social enterprises that support people living at home.”
Anne Rollings, Alzheimer’s Society Operations Manager for Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly said:
“Finding out that you or someone you know has dementia can be overwhelming. Our Dementia Advisor Service offers information and practical guidance to help people understand the condition, cope with day-to-day challenges and prepare for the future.
“We’re really pleased that Devon County Council is supporting us to reach people living with dementia in the county and offer them this vital support.
“We look forward to working in partnership with many organisations and communities across Devon and Torbay.”
The Devon Memory Café Consortium is a new body that represents memory cafes across the county.
Jim Delves, Chairman of the Devon Memory Café Consortium, said:
“While the number of people with dementia in Devon stands at about 2 per cent right now, those affected by the condition, including their families or other carers, is closer to 4 per cent.
“Based in many towns and rural areas, Memory Cafes are run by volunteers and meet on a regular basis. They are providing a stigma-free environment in which those with the condition, and their carers, may find laughter, education, companionship and above all peer support.
“Over time, we often see that the benefits of attending memory cafes become more important to the families and carers of people with dementia, because of the level of peer support.
“We look forward to working closely with Devon County Council, the two Devon Clinical Commissioning Groups and the Alzheimer’s Society, to build stronger and better dementia services for people in Devon, and endeavour to improve quality of service across the county through the network of Memory Cafes.”
To find out more about services that support people with dementia in your local community, visit Pinpoint, Community services in Devon, on www.pinpointdevon.co.uk
To contact the Alzheimer’s Society, visit www.alzheimers.org.uk
To find out more about the Devon Dementia Cafe Consortium, visit http://dmcc.org.uk
Posted in: Health and Wellbeing