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Dementia Awareness Week 21-26 May

This news article was published more than a year ago. Some of the information may no longer be accurate.

Published: 20/07/2012

During Dementia Awareness Week, which runs until May 26, we are raising the profile of the services we offer to people with dementia with various events where we will be using the opportunity to give advice and support to residents and carers who can find out more about what is on offer.

People attending our dementia day services in Kingswood and Yate are being helped with their instant recall with the use of technology. Thanks to a government grant, we have invested in eight iPads which our day centre staff use for interactive sessions with people where they enjoy listening to some of their old favourite songs which can be instantly accessed. This is a great way to bring back memories and is also a fun exercise.

Sue Jaques, community engagement officer, said: “One of our service users who moved into Woodleaze Residential Care Home in Yate earlier this year is at an advanced stage of Alzheimer’s. He hadn’t communicated with anyone verbally since moving in and then staff saw him really light up and speak for the first time when they called up ‘New York, New York’ by Frank Sinatra on the iPad. So this was a bit of a breakthrough and just goes to show how technology can help people in many different ways.”

A second memory café for South Gloucestershire residents is being launched during the week and is held at Hanham Community Centre on Tuesday evenings from 6.30pm to 8.30pm. If you have dementia or are caring for someone with dementia you will meet friendly and supportive people there and spend time sharing information and experiences. This new café complements the well-established café in Winterbourne which is held on the first Monday of every month between 2pm and 4pm at the Greenfield Centre. Further details about the memory café in Hanham is available from the Alzheimer’s Society on 0117 961 0693 or email

And residents at the Extra Care housing complex in Cambrian Green use the iPad to identify birds. Sue added: “Staff say it’s lovely for keen birdwatchers with dementia who can no longer recall birds’ names to be able to identify the blue tits and goldfinches out of the window using a bird-watching app on the iPad.”

People living across Bristol and South Gloucestershire are benefiting from closer partnership working thanks to a joint Bristol & South Gloucestershire Dementia Programme Board which has been set up to improve the lives of people with dementia. A highly successful weekly sports and social group held each Monday (10am – 2pm) at Bradley Stoke Leisure Centre is being echoed at Hengrove Park Leisure Centre on Thursdays between 10am and 2pm. The first session is due to start on Thursday 24 May.

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