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Canford Heath Dementia Friendly Community Group


Registered as a Dementia Friendly Community


In March 2012 the Prime Minister raised the profile of dementia by setting the Dementia Challenge, which was to deliver major improvements in dementia care and research by 2015. In that challenge there was a commitment to the development of Dementia Friendly Communities across the UK. A Dementia Friendly Community is one where people with dementia are enabled to live as independently as possible and to continue to be part of their community and at the same time, are met with understanding and given support when they need it. Across different parts of Dorset the Alzheimer’s Society is creating Dementia Friendly Communities and will be coordinating the work on of the Canford Heath Dementia Friendly Community.


To address the key priorities that have been identified at a National level but need to be met at a local level:

  • Listen to those living with dementia and carers in Canford Heath and seek to improve the environment to help remove barriers and minimise any difficulties faced.
  • Raise awareness of dementia throughout Canford Heath to ensure we are inclusive of people with dementia and carers, to help improve their ability to remain independent and have choice and control over their lives.
  • Through the offer of training and awareness, to support and encourage businesses and organisations in Canford Heath to learn what it is like to live with dementia and turn that understanding into action and deliver changes as part of their commitment to bring about change.
  • Create a Dementia Friendly Community in Canford Heath so that people with dementia and those who care for them are encouraged to seek help and are supported by their community.
  • Seek funding opportunities in support of these aims.


Canford Heath Dementia-Friendly Community Group

  • A project support group representing the local community has formed to move the ‘Making Canford Heath Dementia-Friendly’ initiative forward and help achieve the aims and objectives for the area..

  • The group will remain responsive and flexible and future activity and events will seek to work in partnership to help support now and into the future.

  • The group meets not less than 4 times a year, or more frequently if required. Our overall aim is to address as many of the barriers that people with dementia may face when living in Canford Heath. From the work that was done nationally 47% of people identified that they no longer felt part of their local community and our aims would be to improve that in Canford Heath. .

Projects Being Undertaken

The initial project is to make Canford Heath a more Dementia Friendly environment.  

To achieve this we have identified a number of actions, but these need to be developed further following consultation:

  • Consult with local people living with dementia and their carers, to identify barriers that exist and improvements that could be made
  • Offer and encourage training to local shops and businesses.
  • Promote awareness of dementia and the work of the group
  • Encourage as many people as possible to become Dementia Friends and or Champions.
  • Display the national logo, ‘Working to become Dementia Friendly’ in shops where they have completed an awareness raising session or are dementia friends. Plus completed a DAA action plan


There is a very clear expression of interest and enthusiasm from all the members of the group to ensure we progress towards achieving our aims.

  • We have organised a Dementia Conference in September 2014 which was attended by around 80 local people, which identified a range of suggestions and proposals to improve Canford Heath as a Dementia Friendly environment.
  • We have worked in partnership with the local faith community and initiated memory related church services
  • We have initiated offers of training to local shops.
  • We have initiated carers support sessions, and plan to develop these further.
  • Included a memory walk in the Canford Heath 50 event.
  • Began the process of raising awareness in the area
  • We are applying for Alzheimer’s Society National Recognition for Canford Heath. Being awarded a working towards becoming dementia friendly logo.
  • We are developing a leaflet and plan to use local media to promote the work of the group.

Key supporters and partners

  • Borough of Poole
  • Alzheimer’s Society
  • Community Café, Canford Heath
  • GP surgeries
  • Local Library
  • Local Faith Community and Faithworks Wessex.

For more information please contact Chas Rowlings, c.rowling@poole.gov.uk.