The SAFER Project, a Big Lottery funded project run by West Yorkshire Trading Standards, became Dementia Friends Champions last year. Now they have gained new ‘Friends’ by delivering a Dementia Friends session to colleagues who work frontline with consumers across West Yorkshire Joint Services including Trading Standards and Archives staff.
The one-hour session is part of Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Friends programme, an initiative launched in February 2013 to help people understand what it might be like to live with dementia and turn that understanding into action. Alzheimer’s Society has achieved their aim to have one million Dementia Friends by 2015, to help make England more dementia friendly and improve the lives of the 670,000 people currently living with the condition.
Having volunteered to be Dementia Friends Champions, Carrie Wilson and Lanson Moore delivered the session and will be delivering many more over the next 3 years as part of The SAFER Project. They said ‘We signed up to be Dementia Friends Champions as we are working with people who may be living with Dementia on a daily basis through The SAFER Project. Being Dementia Friends Champions gives us a better understanding of how we can help. It’s easy to get involved, we signed up through the website and attended a one day training course on how to deliver the sessions. We are very proud that The SAFER Project and indeed staff at West Yorkshire Joint Services are now part of a growing network of people helping to create dementia friendly communities across England.’
The Scams and Fraud Education for Residents (SAFER) Project is a three year Big Lottery Funded community engagement initiative and focuses specifically on educating older adults who are at most risk of being targeted by such scams. Workshops and training for partner agencies are taking place all across West Yorkshire with the aim of reducing the number of victims and increasing confidence when dealing with this type of crime.
David Lodge, Head of West Yorkshire Trading Standards Service said “Creating Dementia Friendly Staff is part of our plan to work towards a Dementia Friendly approach across the whole of West Yorkshire Joint Services. This increased awareness of working with those living with Dementia and how we can adapt and help them will benefit the residents and communities in which we work on a daily basis.”
Daisy Robson, Dementia Friends Regional Support Officer at Alzheimer’s Society said: ‘Less than half of us think we know enough about dementia. Dementia Friends is the perfect opportunity to be able to invite everyone up and down the country to improve their knowledge. Dementia Friends isn’t about creating experts, it’s about helping people understand a little bit more about what it’s like to live with the condition and then turn that understanding into action – anyone of any age can be a Dementia Friend.’
Join Dementia Friends today and be part of social movement to help create more communities that are dementia friendly. Go to dementiafriends.org.uk to find your nearest Dementia Friends information session or to volunteer as a Dementia Friends Champion.