Dementia is an illness that most of us have encountered within our family or social circles. As well as memory loss, people encounter physical and cognitive challenges, they often become isolated, feel self-conscious about mixing socially and beleive they have nothing to add to their community. The impact upon their loved ones is significant, it can be a lonely, scary time for everyone involved.
Rosemary and Time provides a safe space to meet, learn new skills, enjoy copious amounts of banter and laughter and rarely is the word dementia mentioned. We are all about the positives in an individual's life, embracing all of their qualities. We run Friday Friends, our weekly over 60's group, a Young Onset Dementia Cafe and a Dementia Friendly Gardening Group.
We are led by our members and they have expressed a desire to expand the activities we offer and increase the number of days we are avaialble to them, ultimately enabling more people to live full, fun lives despite their dementia.
What we'll deliver:
- Increase our weekly sessions in Grimsargh to twice a week
- Hire in local dementia friendly tutors to deliver chair based exercise sessions
- Engage local dementia friendly artists to deliver creative writing, art and craft classes
- Increase the Young Onset Cafe in Broughton from monthly to twice a month
Why it's a great idea:
It is so easy to focus on the overwhelming impact a diagnosis of dementia can bring to a family. It can become the focus of an individual's life, wiping out any hope for the future or acknowledgement of past accomplishments.
Our aim is to use a wide range of activities to counter this response, to remind those with dementia of what they still have to offer and to give them a chance to spend time with their loved ones purely as husband and wife or father and daughter, not 'person with dementia' and carer. This is such a valuable opportunity to create happy memories for their family carers and indeed to just live in the moment and enjoy it.
By hiring in local professionals we are providing support for those small businesses or charities that genuinely understand our member's needs. Our activities use village halls, small cafes and libraries as our venues, ensuring our income is kept in the local economy as much as we can, and ensuring our members remain part of their neigbourhood.
Steps to get it done:
- Source local professionals to deliver our sessions
- Distribute marketing material to promote the activities beyond our current members
- Plan an exhibition of our member's artistic achievements in partnership with a local venue
Rosemary and Time started out as a gardening therapy project, based on 20 years expereince in the field. The idea of this expansion has come from our members who have expressed a desire to try a wider range of activities with similar therapeutic benefits. Our members are the ones who guide and influence our development. We have always felt that it is their project, we are here to make it happen. We just need some support in hiring the right folk to help deliver the sessions effectively.
At the end of each Friday Friends session we have a sing along. Many of the group will spontaneously get up and dance, jiving being a big favourite of theirs. Some of the group are physically unable to join in, and so the idea of some dance classes that incorporate chair based dancing was born. For this we have approached a local group who train people with learning disabilities to become dance instructors. We really felt that this embraced our own 'yes we can' attitude.