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Sandwell Library and Information Service

Sandwell Library and Information Service is made up of 19 Community Libraries, 5 Express Libraries, Special Library Services - Mobile Library and the Home Library Service, Community History and Archives Service. Providing services that are “Open to everyone: to explore, discover and enjoy”. A free service including lending and reference resources online and in the library, access to computers, many varied types of activities for children and adults and community spaces, delivered through helpful and knowledgeable staff.

16 November 2016
West Midlands
Local Alliances:
Sandwell Dementia Action Alliance

1. Action Plan

1. The National Dementia Declaration lists seven outcomes that the DAA are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?

1. The National Dementia Declaration lists a number of outcomes that we are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?

  1. Information on dementia and community resources to include:
    • Dementia Books on Prescription is a collection of books to help people living with dementia and their carers. We have these collections in all of our libraries. We also have the wider Books on Prescription collections which cover all of the major health issues that affect people in Sandwell including mental health issues e.g. depression, stress, anxiety as well as stroke, cancer, diabetes, asthma, etc.
    • Reminiscence resources
    • Reports on care homes
  2. Friendly spaces for dementia support and carers groups to visit or get together
  3. Home Library Service for people who are unable to get to the library because of disability, illness, frailty or who are unable to carry books including people with dementia and their carers to help support independent living
  4. Mobile Library visiting sheltered accommodation, elderly people’s and nursing homes, day centre’s, community centre’s as well as areas that do not have a static library nearby
    • Reminiscence sessions  (occasional due to capacity but would like to do more)
  5. Music and spoken word stories available to loan 
  6. Health Information promotions and distribution of information (posters, leaflets and access to online resources)
    • Work with partners 

Sandwell libraries have a good customer service ethos and provide training for staff and volunteers. We are constantly looking for ways to improve the service we provide to the community we serve.

Staff delivering the Home Library Service and working on the mobile library have received dementia awareness training, adult safeguarding and carer awareness training.


2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?

Budget contraints and staff capacity are our biggest challenges . The ablility to balancing this commitment alongside all our other commitments.

2. Actions

  • Improve staff awareness to help people with dementia and their carers

    1. Dementia awareness will be included in our 2014/15 Training Plan
    2. We will work with Buds ( Better Understanding of Dementia for Sandwell) to host dementia friends awareness sessions in all our libraries. These will be open to everyone.
    3. A minimum of one member of staff per library will take part in a dementia awareness session and become a dementia friend. All library staff and volunteers will be encouraged to take part in a dementia friends awareness session
    4. Every library will have access to the Innovation in Dementia Help pack for customer-facing staff as additional support
    5. All Outreach Library Service staff will take part in a dementia friends awareness session.
  • Produce and promote booklist and information pack including online resources

    Produce and promote a booklist and information pack including a list of useful online resources. Include the new Sandwell extended Books on Prescription list and other relevant book titles.

  • Spreading the word

    1. Identify and work with partners to promote what the library service has to offer people with dementia and their carers
    2. Further develop links with relevant partners
    3. Information provision and information packs at all Sandwell libraries
    4. Encourage staff to become Dementia Friends
  • Share best practice

    Share best practise to ensure all Sandwell public libraries continue working to become a dementia friendly community.

    Initial Scoping
  • Healthy Lifestyles

    Promote healthy lifestyles especially around stroke avoidance.

  • Dementia Awareness Week

    All libraries will participate in Dementia Awareness Week 18 – 24 May with a minimum of one event per town. Listed are a range of events held in Sandwell libraries during May/June • Adults film clubs show a dementia themed film e.g The Notebook, Away From Her, The Savages, Aurora Borealis, Iris: A Memoir of Iris Murdoch o Film and book tie in promotions. o Buds charity fundraising opportunities at film club event • Display dementia BoP resources • Display of dementia themed reading books e.g. Where Memories Go, My Bonnie, Before I Forget, The Little Girl in the Radiator: Mum Alzheimer’s and Me, But Then Something Happened, The Exit, Dorchester Terrace, • Tea or coffee morning with Buds • Dementia friends awareness session – run by Buds • Show people how to become a dementia friend online • Reminiscence sessions

  • Plan and deliver staff charity events to raise funds and awareness of dementia and Buds

    Plan and deliver a range of charity events throughout 2015 to raise awareness and fundraise for Buds. Events include: Library Quizzes - 1 in each of the 6 towns with the final at the main Central Library All That Jazz adult talent contest with final to coincide with Birmingham Jazz and Blues festival The Wow Factor talent competition for children (in it's 2nd year) Organised/sponsored walk for library staff and volunteers around Sandwell Valley Country Park 2 staff taking part in the Wolf Run 1 staff relative taking part in the Wolf run and the Tough Mudder.

  • Apply for funding and if successful deliver awareness sessions for primary school children

    The Children's Library Team have written and performed an interative dementia awareness session for primary school children. The session was delivered at the Dementia Book on Prescription Launch earlier in the year and was very well received. This session could be delivered to primary school children across Sandwell if we can secure funding.