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Riverside ECHG

RiversideECHG are part of a large registered social landlord, The Riverside Group, operating nationally. The RiversideECHG division of the organisation specialises in supported housing for a wide range of client groups and sheltered housing schemes for people over the age of 55. Our sheltered schemes are located nationwide, totalling over 200 in all, and we operate in Havering as well as in neighbouring boroughs of Redbridge and Barking and Dagenham. We are currently developing extra care schemes on a national basis and work with a number of boroughs and local authorities to offer support for our clients. Riverside ECHG is accredited to the CHS Code of Practice and is a member of EROSH, Action on Elder Abuse and subscribe to the Elderly Accommodation Counsel. This year we have been shortlisted for an award with the Elderly Accommodation Counsel and were silver winners in 2011 for our digital inclusion programme.

11 August 2015
Care, Housing Sector
Local Alliances:
Havering 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?

Riverside has a commitment to improving the quality of life for those living with dementia in our schemes. We will do this through increased awareness and training for our staff, aids and adaptations and environments which are more suitable for those living with dementia and being a resource for information and signposting to other local services which can holistically support those living with dementia, their families and carers.

We have encouraged our staff to attend dementia friends’ sessions and we have several champions throughout the organisation.

Our champions have also been asked to hold dementia friends sessions for other organisations including Camden Council, Central Bedfordshire Council and The CSV.

We have established new extra care schemes where the environment has been specifically designed to improve the lives of those who have or may develop dementia in the future. We have established reminiscence activities on a regular basis in all our schemes, providing memory boxes and reminiscence corners and displays to encourage interaction and evoke memories and have renewed our signage in schemes and our decorating and soft furnishings to be more dementia friendly.

Our team leaders have attended dementia leadership courses and have spread the good practice through their teams as far as support planning, individual and group activities, and general awareness of their clients, tenants and  the challenges they may face if diagnosed with dementia.


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

The challenges are that as we learn more about the environments and the considerations for those living with dementia, we are keen to change things in our schemes, and the finances are, of course, limited to make major changes quickly. However, the challenge is to make small but significant changes which can make an enormous difference to an individual and maintain their independence and quality of life for as long as possible.

The other main challenge is the perception and attitude of other clients and their understanding of dementia. We are addressing this by offering dementia friends sessions to all our clients, tenants and residents, their families, friends and those from the local communities in order to work towards true dementia friendly communities in our neighborhoods, schemes and individual lives.

Member website


2. Actions

  • Improve the environments in schemes, both for individuals and in communal areas in order for them to better meet the needs of those living with dementia

    1. We aim to use the dementia friendly physical environments checklist in conjunction with the Kings Fund EHE “ is your housing dementia friendly” environmental assessment tool , to analyse each of our sheltered  schemes to establish changes which can be made at local level.e.g signage, reminiscence display areas ,increase in memory resources (we already use memory DVD’s and posters etc..,  and to form action plans for larger projects as identified. We have already made budget provision for new signage in some schemes and have taken specialist advice as far as recent re-decoration and supply of new furniture and soft furnishings is concerned.
    2. We aim to continue providing small scale aids and adaptations for individuals within their own homes, e.g coloured grab rails and lever taps as well as telecare equipment, from our national aids and adaptation budget and to work with occupational therapists to supply large scale adaptations such as walk in showers.

    2014 - Fourth Quarter Update

    New member

  • Raise the awareness of staff, tenants, family and friends of the challenges which those living with dementia face and how they can be supported .

    1. We have already held a number of dementia friends’ sessions within the organisation for staff and tenants and their families and friends. We aim to extend these sessions and make them compulsory for all our staff, regardless of the client group with whom they normally work.
    2. We will publicise dementia friends sessions to our tenants through our local and national newsletters and offer flexible sessions to meet the requirements of our tenants, e.g. evening and weekend courses so that families and friends may be able to attend more easily.
    3. We will continue to increase the number of dementia champions within the organisation so that more sessions can be offered.
    4. We will source more specialist training within our teams who work specifically with older people by continuing to promote the on line  Social Care Institute of Excellence “ Open Dementia Programme “ as well as sourcing local training opportunities .
    5. We will continue to offer our dementia champions to help other organisations to offer dementia friends sessions outside RiversideECHG, e.g. more sessions have been planned with the Community Service for Volunteers based in central London.

    2014 - Fourth Quarter Update

    New member

  • Supply detailed, relevant and up to date information on local services in order to support those diagnosed with dementia and their friends, families and carers.

    1. Each of our local scheme managers within our sheltered housing team have researched local services within their areas and have produced a dossier of information to provide to clients and their families/carers as necessary.
    2. Following on from this we propose that our scheme staff arrange visits to these services in order to familiarise themselves with what is on offer so that they can give appropriate and personalised advice and information to their clients and their families.e.g local dementia café’s and day centres.
    3. We also propose that our local staff arrange visits to specialist dementia schemes and care homes locally where they can view and discuss good practice which could be translated to their environments. Our team leader and area manager have recently visited our own new flagship extra care scheme in Newcastle and contacts have been already made with local organisations running extra care dementia specialists schemes in the London area.
    Delivery, Implementation

    2014 - Fourth Quarter Update

    New member