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St Joseph and St Margaret Clitherow Parish Church

St Joseph and St Margaret Clitherow Parish serves the needs of the Catholic community in Bracknell. St Joseph’s Church is located at Braccan Walk in the town centre opposite the entrance to Princess Square and within walking distance of the bus and train stations. Our Parish aims to be a community of welcome, prayer, love and support for all. At the heart of everything that we do is our relationship with Jesus and our response to the Good News of the Gospel to bring Christ’s peace, healing and hope to everyone whom we meet.

26 January 2020
South East
Faith Groups
Local Alliances:
Bracknell Forest 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?

As a Parish, we seek to be aware of the needs of those in our community who are experiencing difficulties. The care of elderly people including those with dementia, is a priority in terms of the Church’s pastoral and spiritual care and we seek to promote the inclusion of people with dementia and their carers in all aspects of parish life. We encourage attendance at Mass by those able to attend and Ministers of the Eucharist bring Holy Communion each week to those unable to attend Mass or who are now resident in Care Homes. By promoting Dementia awareness, we aim to be a community of understanding and welcome for people with dementia and their families through support to carers and good practice in ministry.

“In safeguarding and promoting life – at every stage and in any condition it is found – may we recognize the dignity and value of every human being from conception to death”. Pope Francis

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

Pastoral Visitors visiting those with dementia in their homes are required to go through the Diocesan Safeguarding process The Parish has many and varied demands on its resources and is dependent on volunteers to spread best practice across a large number of people.

Member contacts

Mrs Maura Holt - see contact details tab.

Member website


2. Actions

  • To support the Bracknell Forest Dementia Action Alliance

    St Joseph and St Margaret Clitherow Parish will endeavour to ensure that a parish representative attends the bimonthly meetings of the DAA. We will provide a meeting space and support to the DAA where or when possible.

    Being implemented

    2017 - Second Quarter Update

    Maura Holt has been the parish representative at Bracknell Forest DAA meetings since September 2015. The DAA meeting in August 2017 will be held in St Joseph's Church Hall.

  • To raise awareness of dementia in our parish


    To understand the needs of those who live with dementia, we advertise details of local Dementia Friends information sessions in our parish newsletter, encourage members of our parish to become Dementia Friends and, if possible, Dementia Champions, promote Dementia Prayer Week in March and Dementia Actions Week in May each year.

    Being implemented

    2017 - Second Quarter Update

    Two open Dementia Friends' information sessions were hosted by our Church in October and November 2015 and led by Caroline Rathmell, the Bracknell Forest Dementia Action Alliance Co-ordinator at that time. The sessions were well attended by members of our parish and, in particular, members of our Pastoral Care Team who were specifically targeted. Since then, local Dementia Friends' information sessions have been advertised in the parish newsletter.We have produced Dementia prayer cards for Dementia Prayer Week in 2016 and 2017 and we held a time of music and reflection during Dementia Awareness Week 2017.

  • To ensure that our Church, Hall and facilities are dementia friendly.

    We will carry out a Dementia Audit of signage, communal spaces and access points. To ensure that the Church environment is dementia friendly and easily accessible, we will identify improvements and implement these improvements where/when possible. We will endeavour to ensure that before any refurbishments are carried out that they are dementia friendly.


    2017 - Second Quarter Update

    We have raised awareness that the needs of those with Dementia should be considered before any planned improvements take place. We have also researched what is needed to conduct a Dementia Audit:


  • To train and support members of our Pastoral Care team in reaching out to those with dementia and their carers.

    The Pastoral Care team is made up of the Parish Priest, Parish Office staff, those who visit the sick at home or in hospital, those who give lifts to Mass, those who organise events for the sick, housebound and elderly, members of the Parish Outreach Group, members of the Bereavement Support Group and members of St Vincent de Paul. 

    We encourage members of the Pastoral Care team to become Dementia Friends.  

    Training and support are important in parish ministry to people with dementia and their carers.  The Pastoral Care team will meet regularly for training and support, to develop awareness of the spiritual and pastoral needs of people with dementia and to plan and implement spiritual and pastoral support for them.

    Useful references: 

      Developing a Dementia-Friendly Church: A Practical Guide

      Top 10 tips for Dementia Friendly Churches

    ·  Guidance for faith organisations

    ·  Growing Dementia-Friendly Churches

    ·  Spiritual Care and people with dementia

    ·   Worship and people with dementia

    ·   Visiting people with dementia


    Being implemented

    2019 - Fourth Quarter Update

    Carry out an audit of how many members of the Pastoral Care team have not yet attended a Dementia Friends' Information session and organise an in-house Dementia Friends Information session for them. Continue to hold in house/public Dementia Friends' Information sessions  every quarter. 

    2017 - Second Quarter Update

    Some members of the Pastoral Care team have attended Dementia Friends information sessions. Bimonthly Pastoral Care meetings provide opportunities  to pray for the sick, the lonely and those in need including those with dementia and explore ways in which we can reach out in love and support to them and their caregivers.

  • To understand and address the needs of caregivers

    The commitments and responsibilities of families and carers of people with dementia can leave them feeling marginalized or even excluded from parish life.  The emotions involved in caring can often be complex and carers need support from our Parish community.

    We endeavour to signpost carers to relevant local support services to ensure that they are equipped with the knowledge to support themselves and those whom they are caring for who are living with dementia. We will endeavour to ensure that members of the Pastoral  team have access to up to date information.  We will develop awareness of the spiritual and pastoral needs of those who care for people with dementia by giving them opportunities to pray and talk about their experiences and their feelings in a safe and supportive environment. We will look into ways in which we can offer carers practical support.

    Being implemented

    2017 - Second Quarter Update

    We have made good use of the Bracknell Forest Dementia Adviser's Newsletter which is circulsted and posted on our Church Noticeboard. We have supported caregivers by enabling them to have some respite time.