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Amateur Swimming Association (ASA) - County Durham

The ASA is the English National Governing Body for swimming, diving, water polo, open water and synchronised swimming. As an organisation it aims to encourage more people to swim by giving more people, more opportunities to swim for health and fun. The service it offers also includes support for swimming club and the organisation of competition from grass roots through to elite level swimming.

28 June 2016
North East
Local Alliances:
North East Dementia 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?

The ASA have developed the Dementia Friendly Swimming Project to help enhance the swimming experience of those living with dementia and their carers by improving facilities and removing barriers to participation.

The ASA has a central role in promoting swimming as a healthy lisestyle choice and the key aim is to get more people swimming more often by transforming the way swimming is delivered. The key health outcomes for swimming are:

Getting all inactive adults motivated, educated and more active.

Getting all children more active.Getting patients with long term conditions more active.Reduce health inequalities

By working with local authorities, including Manchester and County Durham in Year 1, and bringing together a partnership of public health professionals, adult social care, health trainers, carers and local community groups, we aim to create a safe and friendly environment for people with dementia.

In County Durham the aim is to create a network of dementia friendly swimming pools across the city’s local authority owned swimming pools. This will be achieved through:

providing dementia awareness training to leisure staffimproving the quality and availability of swimming provision for people living with dementia and their carersidentifying possible improvements to leisure facilities to help promote a dementia friendly environment.

The project is for 3 years with funding from the Department of Health.

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

Challenges to these outcomes include:

Working together across the city to achieve a Dementia Friendly Swimming Programme Staff awareness of dementia Pool programming and time availability in the pool Creating effective pathways through from the pools to the local community and user groups Knowing the community we are targeting and tailoring the marketing appropriately Creating the right environment, with appropriate sessions in the pool. Sharing best practice, key learning areas and challenges encountered

2. Actions

  • Form an appropriate steering group

    We have formed a steering group involving key organisations from across health, dementia, older people and leisure services who will form a network of knowledge and resources to turn this into a successful programme. The aim is for 8-12 members to lead the development of this programme and share knowledge on user groups and best practice within the city which can be implemented into the DF Swimming Programme.

  • Provision of dementia awareness training to facility staff from front of house to poolside

    At least 6 staff from each pool facility in County Durham will be trained, through the Step Inside Training workshop delivered by the Alzheimer’s Society. This will be delivered in a tiered approach, beginning with Chester Le Street Leisure Centre and Teesdale Leisure Centre, with the plan to roll out across all local authority pool sites across Year 1 in 3 tiers.

  • Creation of a Dementia Friendly Swimming Programme toolkit to share best practice, challenges and key learning from Year 1 and beyond.

    Through regular communication between all involved in Year 1, we plan to develop a programme toolkit which provides advice and direction to those cities joining the project firstly in Year 2 and then again in Year 3. This will include advice on effective marketing, examples of best practice and information on barriers and challenges encountered, along with how to adapt and work with these.

    This toolkit will be ongoing, with new information learned added throughout Year 2 to support others joining in Year 3.

    Planning, Initial Scoping