Dementia Champion encourages businesses to become Dementia Friends

Forest of Dean District Council’s Dementia Champion is encouraging businesses across the district to become Dementia Friends to help support people who are living with dementia.

 

It is estimated that one in 14 people have dementia and one in two of us know someone who is living with the condition. In the county there are 9,000 people diagnosed with dementia but this is thought to be many more in reality.

 

Publica Group, which employs Forest of Dean District Council staff, along with staff from Cotswold and West Oxfordshire District Councils plus finance, HR and ICT staff from Cheltenham Borough Council, is encouraging its employees to become Dementia Friends. It is hoping other businesses, both large and small, across the district will do the same.

 

To become a Dementia Friendly organisation a representative from the business needs to sign up at https://www.dementiafriends.org.uk/. Signing up is quick, easy and free of charge. You will then be sent a code to send around to your employees. To become Dementia Friends employees need to then watch two short informative videos (less than 10 minutes in total).

 

Cllr Julia Gooch, the council’s Dementia Champion said: “This is one small action which will have a big impact by helping to support the communities in which you work.

 

“Completing the course will help you to be more aware, recognise and understand the confusion a person with dementia experiences. It will help you to make a person feel more comfortable and less isolated by taking away fear and embarrassment of forgetfulness and help them stay independent for as long as possible.”

 

Cllr Gooch added: “We have been doing a lot of work out in the community to help support those living with dementia and their families and raise awareness among councillors. We have been praised for leading the way in this area of work but this doesn’t mean we’ll be standing back – we will keep on learning and helping our communities to support those living with the condition and their loved ones.”

 

The videos for organisations offer a comprehensive overview of customer service scenarios that could be faced by a person living with dementia and demonstrate how to handle that scenario.

 

The videos cover public transport, reading and writing, paying for things and speaking on the phone. After watching the videos, employees can receive their Dementia Friends badge and an action card. The action card features our five key messages about dementia and signposts to help and further information. 

 

For more information or support please contact Lena Maller on 01594 812609 or email Lena.Maller@fdean.gov.uk.

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