Outdoor dementia support pilot proves great success
Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin has successfully trialled its first outdoor Dementia Support Group since March at Trinity Centre, Shrewsbury. Supported by their Dementia team, three couples who normally attend Dementia services in Shrewsbury were invited to trial an outdoor, socially distanced session.
On arrival each person sanitised and were seated on separate tables but arranged so they could all still see and talk to each other. The group enjoyed some tea and cake while taking part in a conversation based activity, playing a game all about Shrewsbury and reminiscing about the town they all share.
Feedback from the members was positive with comments such as ‘great to be out of the house’ ‘felt safe’ and ‘very good, enjoyed everything’.
Normally the charity runs ten dementia support groups across Telford & Shropshire but due to the pandemic the groups were suspended. During the past five months staff and volunteers made 50 calls a week to group members and their carer’s and would post out activity packs to provide some support.
Heather Osborne, Chief Executive of Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin, said: “Lockdown has been especially difficult for people living with dementia and their carers with a lot of support moving to telephone or online. We are very happy the trial was a success and look forward to bringing people back together again for in person support and socialising in a safe way”.
Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin are planning to hold some smaller, socially distanced, outdoor sessions for people living with dementia and their carers over the next few weeks in Shrewsbury. The service is not currently taking on new referrals.
To keep up to date with support provided by Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin you can visit their website on www.ageukstw.org.uk. Alternatively you can call the charity on 01743 233 123, leave a message with your name and telephone number.
Pictured: Ursula Fielding with her granddaughter Megan O’Neill