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Isle of Wight Dementia Action Alliance



The number of Island residents (65+) with dementia are predicted to increase by 27% between 2011 and 2020 from approximately 2,600 to 3,300 (Source poppi)In 2013, according to NEPHO (North East Public Health Observatory), the IOW became the local authority with the highest percentage of dementia suffers. There are currently estimated to be 412 residents in Ryde with Dementia.Hampshire has been at the forefront of the dementia friendly communities, working nationally and conducting a pilot in the north of the county last year. The purpose of the pilot was to explore what developing a ‘dementia friendly community’ might mean in practice and what steps Hampshire would need to take to make it become reality. As part of this work, some practical tools were developed and a toolkit.The Hampsire project is still in its pilot phases, and is being conducted on a far larger scale than ours, but presents us with a good model for setting out our own project through evidence and contacts.   We will endeavour to make Ryde a Dementia Friendly Community which will act as an exemplar town to other towns and villages across the Island.   


The purpose of the DFC Steering Group is to develop and support the project plan for Age UK IOW’s work towards making Ryde a Dementia Friendly Community.  The project will aim to ensure that people with dementia are able to feel part of their communities, and that the general public, businesses and organisations are better informed and understanding with regards to the ways they should communicate with people who have dementia.   The group will comprise of key people who represent different organisations and business across the Island and in Ryde.  They will help steer the project to set project targets and Key Performance Indicators (KPI's).  They will serve as an information sharing forum in an advisory capacity. The group will be able to contribute to specific projects relating to their own area of work and objectives where appropriate.  


The lead officer for this steering group will be Age UK IOW’s Health and Wellbeing Development Officer.  


The group will aim to meet bi monthly.  In order for meetings to take place there must be a minimum of 4 people attending each meeting.  An email group will be set up for correspondence in between meetings.  

Community Members Raising Awareness

To be added shortly. 

How to join

If you would like more information on how to support this work of the Dementia Action Alliance on Isle of Wight please contact the person below.  


Emma Lincoln, Health and Wellbeing Development Officer

Email: Emma.Lincoln@ageukiw.org.uk  

Creating Dementia Friendly Communities on the Isle of Wight 


Age UK Isle of Wight (Age UKIW) has been working towards creating a dementia friendly community.  There are approximately 2,600 people living with dementia on the Island, and this figure is set to increase by 23% over the next 10 years.  In 2013 the Island became the local authority with the highest percentage of people living with dementia. 

The project was started with a successful pilot launched in Ryde in February 2014.  Since then the project continues to grow and gather momentum.  A robust steering group has been a crucial part in driving this project forward, people on the steering group include:  a person with dementia, a carer, members from the Isle of Wight Council, Clinical Commissioning Group Lead for frail older people, representatives from Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Sevice, Hampshire Police, Southern Vectis, Libraries, Chair of Alzheimer’s Café, Alzheimer’s Society, Deanery Synod and a local News Agent. 

Following the successful Ryde pilot, which continues, we are about to launch Newport, and are starting to work in the Bay Area and Brighstone including the surrounding villages.

Approach/methods (including how the project engaged with patients and public)

At the outset of the project a strategy plan was written up and agreed by the steering group.  A logo was designed, based on one already used by ‘My Life  A Full Life’ (please see logo above), and it was agreed by the steering group that although this was not an accredited logo or kite mark, organisations involved in the project would need to show a level of commitment before being able to display it.  Organisations showing their commitment must sign up to the National Dementia Action Alliance, which will ensure they are supporting the National Dementia Declaration. 

As the project progressed the following methods were adopted:

  • A survey / questionnaire was carried out with individuals attending Age UK IW Memory Groups.  Giving us the evidence to understand the necessary changes that need to be made
  • A Dementia Awareness Training  Session has been developed and delivered
  • Presentations around the Island about what is a Dementia Friendly Community
  • Intergenerational work in schools
  • A series of events during Dementia Awareness Week
  • Launch events
  • Creating Safe Havens
  • Specific work with partner organisations


The project has engaged with 1,150 people since November 2013, and is broken down as follows:

  • 230 people have received Dementia Awareness Training from organisations including: Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service, Library staff, Police, church personnel, Southern Vectis  bus service, Wightlink, Isle of Wight Hospice
  • 345 people have heard presentations about the work we are undertaking to create Dementia Friendly Communities around the Island (including people with dementia and their carers).
  • 800 young people as part of our Intergenerational work have been involved
  • 350 young people received dementia awareness training
  • 450 young people attended a school assembly focussed around dementia
  • 52 people attended the launch of Ryde the pilot town, representing 15 organisations.  A large number attended the launch at Newport, but the figure was not recorded.
  • 4 Safe Haven have been set up.  A Safe Haven is somewhere a person who has dementia can be taken if they are found lost or confused.  Staff at the Safe Haven will have received Dementia Awareness Training. They will assist the individual until they feel confident to leave, or be picked up by a carer.  We currently have four Safe Havens set up: Southern Vectis, Tower House Surgery and Age UK IW. 
  • Work with partner organisations:
  1. Southern Vectis Safe Journey Cards
  2. have been produced allowing people with memory loss to identify themselves to drivers at the start of their journey. In addition, Southern Vectis staff was trained by Age UK to make them aware of the unique needs of these customers.  This is one in a series of cards that covers a range of different disabilities.  One client with memory problems who has used the card says: “I was reassured when the driver knew all about the card and we had a little chat. He made sure I knew which bus I was on and said that if I had any worries to let him know……. I’m quite happy to get on a bus now knowing that I’ll be looked after.”
  3. Libraries – Ryde and Newport Libraries both now hold a dedicated resources section on dementia.  The council run libraries have also introduced a new category of card for people who have memory problems, whereby books returned late will have fines waived. 
  4. St John the Baptist Church, Ryde – piloted a Dementia friendly Church Service, which 64 people attended, of whom around 20 had dementia.  This service was 30 minutes long, with traditional hymns and prayers, with a short sermon.  Refreshments  were available also.  2 Dementia Friendly Carol Services will be held in Ryde and Newport on 11th and 15th December. 
  5. A GP Surgery
  6. in Ryde has introduced a Dementia Friendly uniform, warn by an Health Care Assistant.  This uniform is bright pink, and is proving to be effective.

Conclusion and implications

From the large number of people whom we have engaged with, and for the work we have scheduled over the next 6 months, we have clear evidence showing the value of this project and how the word is spreading and helping to assist the wider community.  Projects such as the Safe Journey Cards not only help people with dementia, but are beneficial to other older people living in the community.  

Contact name and email:  Emma Lincoln, email: emma.lincoln@ageukiw.org.uk