Alzheimer's Society Leeds
Alzheimer’s Society is the largest charitable organisation in the UK supporting people with dementia, families and carers. We provide supports, services, advice, information, signposting, raise awareness, knowledge and understanding of dementia and coping strategies. Nationally we campaign for improvements to supports and services and for there to be better and greater resources for people with dementia and carers. We are endeavouring to make people and systems that operate in the wider community friendlier to people with dementia and we also fund research into dementia. There is a national website and our worldwide chat-room Talking Point.
- 16 November 2015
- Yorkshire and Humber
- Voluntary Sector, Care, Health
- Local Alliances:
- Leeds Dementia Action Alliance, Yorkshire & Humber 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?
Here in Leeds we provide four services under contract to the City Council and NHS Leeds and we work in collaboration with a number of other third sector organisation to provide dementia cafes, singing groups and other support groups based on things like carers issues, reminiscence, arts, poetry and sporting memories.
We provide talks that raise awareness, knowledge and understanding of dementia in the wider community. We support the Dementia Friendly Communities and Dementia Friends initiatives. We are very prominent in Leeds around the dementia agenda and can influence discussions and decisions on policy and planning.
We have our feet under all of the tables that we need to around health, social care and the wider voluntary and third sector. We have strong relations with a number and variety of organisations and people in Leeds.
We have a number of partnership and collaboration arrangements with other provider organisations, some formal and some less so. There is also the national offer around campaigning and research plus our Website and world-wide chat-room Talking Point.
2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?
The biggest challenge is around our ability to provide supports and services and to meet everyone’s expectations from within the resources that we have at our disposal. The key resource issue is around staffing.
We are keen to increase diagnosis levels but there will then be the challenge of having to support more people with dementia and also more carers.
Generally in the wider community there is a lack of awareness, knowledge and understanding of dementia as a disease and also of what it means for someone who has it and why they behave in the way that they do.
There is also a fear of getting dementia especially amongst older people which makes them reluctant to come forward to get help and support and also to go through the diagnostic process. There is a perception that a diagnosis of dementia is akin to a death sentence and many people simply do not want the diagnosis.
Dementia is potentially an isolating disease and people are often left to deal with it on their own. We want people to live with dementia as positively as they can for as long as they can