New dining club for people living with early onset dementia launches as part of Dementia Awareness Week | News and Events

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New dining club for people living with early onset dementia launches as part of Dementia Awareness Week

A new dining club for people living with early onset dementia in Salford will be launched during Dementia Awareness Week on Tuesday 17 May at the Angel Centre, Salford.

The dining club, run by Greater Manchester West Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (GMW), will provide a way for people living with early onset dementia to take part in a social activity that will help improve their self-esteem and meet people in a similar situation.

The launch will bring people with early onset dementia together to set up a supportive network that will meet monthly in different restaurants of the clubs choosing across Salford.

Following the launch, the first dining club will take place on Wednesday 1 June and then will be held on the first Wednesday of every month throughout Salford.

In general, people with early onset dementia are more likely to:

  • be in work at the time of diagnosis
  • have a partner who still works
  • have dependent children
  • have older parents to care for
  • have heavy financial commitments, such as a mortgage
  • be more physically fit and active
  • have a rarer and genetic form of dementia.

There are more than 2,250 people living with dementia in Salford. It is estimated that there are now 42,325 people who have been diagnosed with early onset dementia (under the age of 65 years) in the UK.  (Ref Dementia UK, 2nd edition 2014, Alzheimer’s Society). They represent around 5% of the 850,000 people with dementia.

The Early Onset Dementia Dining Club is run by GMW’s Open Doors project and will be facilitated by a member of staff living with early onset dementia as well as experienced staff with a background in dementia care.

The project aims to create a more dementia friendly city, as the Dining Club will raise awareness of dementia in Salford and help the venues it visits become dementia friendly by proving them with Dementia Friends training.

Gill Drummond, Dementia Quality Lead for Greater Manchester West Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Being diagnosed with dementia doesn’t mean you have to stop doing the things you love and trying new things. Keeping an active social life is key to helping someone living with dementia feel happy and motivated.

“Many people living with early onset dementia are still in full time employment. This often means that they miss out on support, which is only available during core working hours. Our new Dining Club will provide a valuable social activity, which we all take for granted, as well as support and information outside of normal working hours to help those living with the condition.”

To mark Dementia Awareness Week (15 - 21 May), GMW will also be hosting and promoting events across the Trust in partnership with CCG’s, Councils, Alzheimer’s Society, and other NHS Trusts around Bolton, Salford and Trafford, as well as running free courses for people affected by dementia.

There will be information stands held by dementia support workers, Dementia Friends sessions, Singing for the Brain groups, afternoon teas and staff-focused dementia drop in sessions to help GMW staff with caring responsibilities or who are worried about dementia to seek help and support.

As part of Dementia Awareness Week, GMW is also holding creative workshops aimed specifically at people living with dementia who will collaborate with local charity Start in Salford to help create content for a mural about Salford and Bolton that will be installed at Woodlands Hospital in Salford.

In addition, an event facilitated by people living with dementia ‘Embracing the dementia challenge in Salford’, and co-produced between Salford CCG, the University of Salford and the Salford Dementia Champions Group, is taking place on Monday 16 May 2016 at The Lighthouse in Eccles.

The Trust will also be sharing information about what is happening in Greater Manchester and Lancashire and what services are available for people affected by dementia during the week on Twitter and Facebook.

A calendar of events across Bolton, Salford and Trafford for Dementia Awareness Week 2016 is available on the GMW website. Events include open days, art exhibitions, musical celebrations, dancing sessions, swimming challenges, afternoon tea celebrations and more.

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